The World Anti-Doping Agency stands for the disqualification of all Russian athletes and government officials from the participation in this summer’s Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. The decision is based on the results of independent investigation conducted by Richard McLaren, Canadian lawyer.
The WADA called for investigation due to allegations that Russian officials regularly swapped out athletes’ drug-tainted samples for clean ones that would pass inspection. Now, that the serious violation of rules is proved by the investigation, WADA decided to step further than just the ban on Russian track and field athletes that was issued last month by the International Association of Athletics Federations.
Here are some of the statements from the report of independent investigator Richard McLaren:
- Russia’s Ministry of Sport determined which athletes needed protection under its plan, called the Disappearing Positive Methodology.
- The plan touched a range of sports, from athletics (track and field) to wrestling, weightlifting, judo, skating and sailing.
- A steroid cocktail that was “optimized to avoid detection” contained oral turinabol (later replaced by trenbolone), oxandrolone, and methasterone. The report adds that the steroids “were dissolved in alcohol (Chivas for men and Vermouth for the women).”
- Nicknamed “Duchess,” the steroid cocktail was to be swished around in athletes’ mouths and then spat out, a process that left them vulnerable to detection for only three to five days — a shorter window of detection than other delivery methods offer.
“The findings of the report show a shocking and unprecedented attack on the integrity of sport and on the Olympic Games,” IOC President Thomas Bach says. “Therefore, the IOC will not hesitate to take the toughest sanctions available against any individual or organization implicated.”
U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun comments on the unreliable anti-doping system: “The McClaren Report confirms what we have stated previously: the current anti-doping system is broken and urgently requires the attention of everyone interested in protecting clean athletes. We look forward to working with the IOC, WADA and the entire Olympic family to address the flaws in the current system so that a uniform approach to anti-doping can be implemented and enforced around the world.”
Talking about the reasons that might have encouraged some of Russia’s top officials to engage in the cheating, Michael Newcity, a Russian scholar at Duke University, says: “The Sochi Winter Olympics were intended as a reminder to the world that Russia remained relevant, powerful, and successful.”
Taking into consideration the report, the International Olympic Committee is planning a telephone conference to discuss possible sanctions against the Russian athletes including the participation in the 2016 Rio games.