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Russian Doping Scandal = BIG Olympic Threat

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Coe's arrival at the top of the IAAF is perfectly timed (so perfectly that I presume it was intentional). Russia may or may not take part in Rio, but athletics has the chance over the next 10 months to show it's reforming fast.

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Doping has to be tackled head-on but, all the same, it would be weird not to have any Russian representation in Rio.

I just hope the Russian Olympic committee moves to deal with this matter in a satisfactory way in time for next year's Olympics! :(

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Head of Athletics Australia calls for Russia to be banned following the report as well.

WADA's commission also called for five Russian athletes — including 800m Olympic winner Mariya Savinova — to be given lifetime bans, suggesting the presence of doped athletes had "sabotaged" the 2012 Games in London.

The report has given Australia's Jared Tallent renewed hope of claiming the 2012 Olympic gold medal after finishing second behind Russian Sergey Kirdyapkin in the 50m race walk.
Athletics Australia chief executive Phil Jones this morning called for Russia's athletics federation to be banned from next year's Games in Rio, saying there was not enough time for the country to prove it was clean. "I think given the time between now and the Rio Olympics, it's very difficult to see that their house is going to be demonstrably in order by the middle of next year." Jones said he was never 100 per cent sure doping was taking place in Russia, but he was not surprised.
He said most Australian athletes would feel frustrated by the report.
It's hard training knowing you have been robbed: Jared Tallent
"As a result of this widespread inaction, the Olympic Games in London were, in a sense, sabotaged by the admission of athletes who should have not been competing," the report said.
Jared Tallent, who has been outspoken over the doping reputation of the Russian walkers, backed calls to ban Russian athletes and feels vindicated in his campaign to oust drug cheats from the walking competition. "The Russian walkers have had huge problems for a number of years," Tallent told reporters.
"It has been hard to go training every day knowing that you have been robbed of an Olympic gold medal. It is tough. "The IAAF sat on their hands for over two years knowing that he [Kirdyapkin] should have been disqualified."
Tallent spoke on Radio National earlier expressing his concerns that Kirdyapkin will complete his ban in February and return for the Rio Olympics. "There's too much damage been done, they've robbed too many athletes from their day on the podium," he said.
"The Federation has to be at least banned for a year, in my view." He said he would have no confidence athletes would be racing clean in upcoming competitions. "There's a long way to go before anything changes in Russia, particularly in my event. "They've been under heavy scrutiny for the last 12 months and yet still they had six athletes test positive for EPO in June. So they didn't change their ways at all even though they've been under investigation."

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-11-10/athletics-australia-calls-for-russian-ban-after-wada-report/6926410

I didn't know about the drama with Jared Tallent. Absolutely appauling. Was runner up and the gold medalist ended up getting a ban in 2015 and his results between 20 July 2009-20 September 2009, 29 June 2010-9 August 2011, as well as between 17 December 2011 and 11 June 2012 (which include a world championship gold) were annulled. Yet not for the Olympics. Completely understand why he's pissed and saying that the IAAF knew and did nothing.

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Head of Athletics Australia calls for Russia to be banned following the report as well.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-11-10/athletics-australia-calls-for-russian-ban-after-wada-report/6926410

I didn't know about the drama with Jared Tallent. Absolutely appauling. Was runner up and the gold medalist ended up getting a ban in 2015 and his results between 20 July 2009-20 September 2009, 29 June 2010-9 August 2011, as well as between 17 December 2011 and 11 June 2012 (which include a world championship gold) were annulled. Yet not for the Olympics. Completely understand why he's pissed and saying that the IAAF knew and did nothing.

I suppose the situation really does become a huge problem for the Olympics if it turns out that Russia can name names of other countries which have been using its doping techniques. The IAAF would pretty much collapse.

(And possibly a few other sporting federations we haven't yet heard about, of course)

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Agreed on how odd it would be not seeing Russia in Rio next summer with all this revelations going on. Agreed too on vigorously tackling the doping.

Surely outside of the likes of weightlifting and FINA, scary to see what other federations know about the doping of some of its athletes. Maybe tennis. Hell, even horses doped. Better get your act together, Russian sports, quick in 10 months time!

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Personally I feel sorry for their athletes. Lance Armstrong cheated for fame and fortune. The Russian athletes on the other hand are under huge political pressure. Even those who don't wish to engage in doping seem to be pressured into it.

I wonder what this means for the world athletics championships in Eugene, Oregon. It was always bizarre that the IAAF awarded the championships without a bid to a town that just happens to be near the home of Nike. I wish USA Track and Field would volunteer to opt out of hosting. It will look really bad if Russia gets punished for doping and it turns out that the USA has gotten away with skullduggery in the same sport.

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Personally I feel sorry for their athletes. Lance Armstrong cheated for fame and fortune. The Russian athletes on the other hand are under huge political pressure. Even those who don't wish to engage in doping seem to be pressured into it.

This is why a nationwide ban from the Olympics needs to happen instead of individual athlete bans. Although yes that would screw over countless of athletes, more importantly to Russia the whole nation faces an embarrassment, and this is the only way they'll realize how f**ked up they are for what they did and would hopefully change things for the better.

Also I'm watching ABC World News Tonight and the headline to the story "Is the USA owed 11 gold medals?" lol

http://abcnews.go.com/International/us-athletes-medals-russia-hits-back-doping-claims/story?id=35092795

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Definitely not unlike the old Soviet bloc era like the East German women swimmers and Bulgarian weightlifters who were doping as they were bringing honor and glory to their governments as propaganda in displaying Communist supremacy to the world and under pressure for it. Surely there was pressure from the non-injected athletes to engage in that too back then. (Those East German swimmers and the doping revelations certainly deserve a future ESPN 30 For 30, by the way)

Don't forget Russia is part of the BRICS coalition (of which Brazil is a part of too), so that wouldn't look good as far as that goes if a ban occurs. And embarass them as a society.

This ARD documentary from Germany, Wie Russland Seine Sieger Macht (How Russia Produces Its Winners), aired this past December seemed to play an important part in breaking this open. Questionable international success for Russia, it claims, was built upon nationwide doping and a corrupt system. Centers on Juliya Stepanova. Apparently, it's geoblocked back in Germany on YouTube

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jzDztUL_Is4

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Definitely not unlike the old Soviet bloc era like the East German women swimmers...

Exclusive footage from Top Secret!...

:o:lol:

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Wow. So the IOC will have to be revising a lot of their "medallists' lists."

That's why they should NOT declare winners until eight (8) years after so there is no 'clawing back' titles and medals when doping has been discovered. Or they should award medals that can self-destruct by remote command, if found to have been won by cheats!! I think I should propose that.

Edited by baron-pierreIV

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Definitely not unlike the old Soviet bloc era like the East German women swimmers and Bulgarian weightlifters who were doping as they were bringing honor and glory to their governments as propaganda in displaying Communist supremacy to the world and under pressure for it.

I remember I think ABC 20/20 did a whole story on the East German swim team and the charges and lawsuit they brought on those doctors that gave them the drugs. All they got was probation and a couple thousand in fines.

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Russia will not boycott Rio Olympics according to sports minister

The Russian sports minister, Vitaly Mutko, has said the country has no intention of boycotting next year’s Olympics, even if the track and field team is banned.

The International Association of Athletics Federations is due to rule Friday on whether to suspend Russia from competition because of the doping scandal. Mutko says he plans to speak with the IAAF president, Sebastian Coe, before the decision.

Mutko said that even if Russia was suspended “we don’t plan to boycott anything anywhere”. He described Russia as “a dependable partner of the international Olympic movement”.

Dick Pound, the former World Anti-Doping Agency president who headed the review into doping that uncovered a “deeply rooted culture of cheating” had recommended Russia be suspended from competition and barred from the Olympic Games in Rio next year unless it overhauled its approach.

He described Mutko as “complicit” in a programme that could only have happened with the “knowledge and consent” of state authorities.

Mutko had said the commission’s findings were “assumptions” based on “unverified sources, unconfirmed facts” and “the accusations are of course very made up”.

The president of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, expected Russia to comply with doping regulations in time for its athletes to compete at next year’s Rio Games but that it was up to the IAAF to determine if sanctions were necessary.

In a separate development, the Russian bank VTB is to end its sponsorship of international athletics but has insisted the decision is not connected with the doping scandal.

VTB, the second-largest bank in Russia, has a deal which expires at the end of 2015 and will not be renewing the deal, said the IAAF in a statement.

“VTB has expressed no interest to extend its present contract, the last event of which was the IAAF World Championships in Beijing. The contract will come to a natural end in 2015,” said the IAAF.

The VTB first deputy president, Vasily Titov, told the RIA Novosti news agency: “We did not plan to renew it. This has nothing to do with the doping scandal in any way.”

The Russian president, Vladimir Putin, has ordered an investigation into the World Anti-Doping Agency’s findings that his country’s athletes were involved in a systematic doping programme.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/nov/12/russia-olympics-boycott-vitaly-mutko-iaaf-wada

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Just make it easier and ban the whole country altogether from the Olympics, not just the athletics athletes. Trust me none of the other countries will miss them, it just gives them a better chance of getting a medal.

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Russia's track and field federation has been provisionally suspended by the sport's governing body following damning allegations of state-sponsored doping.

The decision by the IAAF's ruling council will keep Russian track and field athletes out of international competition for an indefinite period possibly including next year's Olympics in Brazil.

The vote was 22-1.

AP

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/552998d5025f4e24b1fcc06e1b69a75f/latest-russia-offers-cooperation-ahead-iaaf-vote

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First Sochi, and now this. Congratulations Russia, you're single handedly destroying the Olympics.

Ok, now seriously, everyone pretty much cheats but Russia took it to a new level.

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Foundation Board Media Release: WADA Strengthens Anti-Doping Worldwide

WADA toughens compliance and regulation for all Signatories

Six Signatories including RUSADA declared Non-Compliant with immediate effect

WADA to enhance Whistleblower process and international investigations, and bolster resources accordingly

Colorado Springs, 18 November 2015 – At what has been described as a defining moment for the anti-doping industry, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Foundation Board met in Colorado Springs today and strengthened anti-doping worldwide.

As a key outcome of the meeting, WADA agreed to strengthen its independent compliance and regulatory function that was implemented through the Independent Compliance Review Committee earlier this year; this was one of the many recommendations from the Independent Commission’s Report . The outcome is all the more pertinent, as the Board declared six signatories non-compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code with immediate effect. The National Anti-Doping Organizations (NADOs) of Andorra and Israel were deemed not to have 2015 Code compliant rules in place. Argentina, Bolivia, Ukraine were also declared non-compliant as a result of using non-accredited laboratories, an action prohibited under global anti-doping rules as it relates to analyze blood and urine samples.

The Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) was the final anti-doping organization declared non-compliant, an action that follows a key recommendation of the Independent Commission that concluded its investigation into widespread doping in Russian athletics last week.

“The message from today’s seminal WADA Foundation Board Meeting is clear: there will now be greater focus on strengthening compliance work so that all anti-doping organizations worldwide are held accountable to deliver robust anti-doping programs,” said WADA President, Sir Craig Reedie.

“As we have seen from WADA’s immediate response to the Independent Commission’s Report, action is now well underway to right wrongs that exist in anti-doping. Our priority is now on ensuring all our partners are fully compliant and have watertight anti-doping systems that protect clean athletes and reassure sports fans worldwide,” added Reedie. “Make no mistake, we will not rush this process of compliance, we will do it right – the integrity of sport is under threat.”

“Anti-doping in sport is under the spotlight today like never before, and WADA, along with our partners, have begun the work needed on the road to recovery for Russia. The world is watching and we have acted.”

The Board endorsed moves for WADA to look at strengthening its ability to conduct international investigations, following the success of the recent Independent Commission’s investigation. This sentiment was echoed by the WADA Athlete Committee Chair Beckie Scott, who made a specific request on behalf of the clean athlete community for the Independent Commission’s mandate to be expanded to investigate other sports within Russia.

The WADA President, Sir Craig Reedie, stated: “We will conduct the necessary meetings with the Russian authorities in respect of the non-compliance status of RUSADA that tests athletes in all sports within Russia.”

“A WADA expert team will then meet with the task of ensuring the continuation of testing in Russia. Any information brought forward to me as a result will allow me to make a considered decision on whether or not to extend the Independent Commission’s mandate.”

“The theme of the day has clearly been investigations. I will now write to all public authority stakeholders and ask them to make further contributions specifically to fund anti-doping investigations. Following any commitments made, I will then immediately approach the IOC to seek matching funding.”

The Board also requested enhancements to WADA’s whistleblowing process so as to encourage, and offer greater protection to, anonymous sources that may be willing to come forward with valuable information. The Board – which consists of members of the sport movement and governments – accepted that a new level of resource would be needed for WADA to conduct its enhanced investigative and whistleblowing efforts.

It was also agreed that a group would be formed to explore the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s independent testing proposal, first floated at a recent Olympic Summit in Lausanne, Switzerland. The group, comprising the IOC, International Federations (IFs) and WADA will explore the technical and practical issues associated with such a proposal, and will report back on the feasibility of the proposal, and possible terms of reference and composition for a future working group at the next WADA Foundation Board Meeting in May 2016.

ABOUT WADA

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is the international independent organization created in 1999 to promote, coordinate and monitor the fight against doping in sport in all its forms. The Agency is composed and funded equally by the sports movement and governments of the world. Its key activities include scientific research, education, development of anti-doping capacities and monitoring of the World Anti-Doping Code – the first document harmonizing regulations regarding anti-doping in all sports and all countries.

WADA

https://www.wada-ama.org/en/media/news/2015-11/foundation-board-media-release-wada-strengthens-anti-doping-worldwide

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IAAF sets out strict conditions for Russian doping reforms

Araf ‘must demonstrate verifiable change across a range of criteria’

Sebastian Coe reiterates that there is no timeline for Russia’s return

The Russian athletics federation must cut ties with all past dopers, resolve outstanding disciplinary cases and investigate potential further cases before it can be reinstated, the IAAF has said.

On Friday world athletics’ governing body revealed the conditions Russia must meet to be readmitted, leaving a race against time for Russian athletes to compete at the Rio Olympics next summer.

The Russian federation (Araf) was suspended last month in the wake of damning revelations contained in a report by a World Anti-Doping Agency independent commission of systematic doping and cover-ups in the country.

The IAAF president Sebastian Coe said again there is “no timeline” in place for Russia’s reinstatement and added: “The conditions we have announced leave no room for doubt.

“Russia must demonstrate verifiable change across a range of criteria and satisfy our task force that those criteria will be met permanently. There is no timeline for Russia. It is up to them to implement verifiable change both in anti-doping practice and culture.”

Under the reinstatement conditions, Russia must demonstrate that it is in full compliance with the Wada programme as well as the IAAF rules, and that the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (Rusada), currently suspended, is able to operate without interference.

That follows claims that Russia’s security services were involved in the doping programme. An IAAF task force will determine whether Russia is in compliance with its verification criteria.

The world governing body said Russia must be able to show that none of its directors, officers or staff have any prior links to doping, while introducing a comprehensive code of ethics.

The IAAF said it would take responsibility for testing Russian athletes while Rusada remains suspended so those athletes are in a position to return to competition once Russia’s suspension is lifted. All samples collected are to be tested in laboratories outside Russia.

The IAAF task force’s first trip to Russia to begin its overview is scheduled for January 2016.

http://www.theguardian.com/sport/2015/dec/11/iaaf-conditions-russian-doping-reforms

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Doping report: Corruption was 'embedded' in IAAF

MUNICH (AP) — IAAF leaders must have been aware of the full scale of doping in Russia but did nothing to stop it, and the track and field organization itself was riddled by corruption, a report by a World Anti-Doping Agency panel said Thursday.

"It is increasingly clear that far more IAAF staff knew about the problems than has currently been acknowledged," said the report, written by former WADA president Dick Pound and presented at a news conference in Munich.

"It is not credible that elected officials were unaware of the situation affecting ... athletics in Russia. If, therefore, the circle of knowledge was so extensive why was nothing done? Quite obviously there was no appetite on the part of the IAAF to challenge Russia."

The report added: "The corruption was embedded in the organization. It cannot be ignored or dismissed as attributable to the odd renegade acting on its own."

Pound's commission found that former IAAF president Lamine Diack "was responsible for organizing and enabling the conspiracy and corruption" that took place.

Diack "sanctioned and appears to have had personal knowledge of the fraud and the extortion of athletes," the report said.

The WADA panel laid considerable blame at the feet of the IAAF Council, the overseeing body that included the current president of the IAAF, Sebastian Coe.

Pound's report said council members "could not have been unaware of the level of nepotism that operated within the IAAF," and also "could not have been unaware of the extent of doping."

Coe was in the audience as Pound presented his findings. He listened as Pound rattled off some grim conclusions about the IAAF, including that it remains, he said, an organization in denial.

But Pound backed Coe to stay at the helm of the IAAF, saying he was the best man to lead the organization out of the crisis and restore its credibility.

"As far as the ability of Lord Coe to remain as head of the IAAF, I think it's a fabulous opportunity for the IAAF to seize this opportunity and under strong leadership to move forward," Pound said. "There's enormous amount of reputational recovery that has to occur here and I can't ... think of anyone better than Lord Coe to lead that."

The report also details a relationship between Diack and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

With cases against nine Russian athletes unresolved and the 2013 world championships looming, the report says Diack explained to a lawyer that he is in a "difficult position that could only be resolved by President Putin of Russia with whom he had struck up a friendship."

Pound said the IAAF should not be disbanded. He said he doesn't believe the federation's problems are as grave as those that have brought down the leadership of soccer governing body FIFA.

When Coe took over the presidency in August, he was lavish in his praise of Diack, who led the IAAF for 16 years. The allegations that have since emerged became an increasing source of embarrassment to Coe.

But Pound said he believes Coe had "not the faintest idea of the extent" of Diack's alleged corruption when he took power.

Diack was taken into custody by French authorities in November on corruption and money-laundering charges, suspected of taking more than 1 million euros ($1.1 million) to blackmail athletes and cover up positive tests.

His son, Papa Massata Diack, who worked as an IAAF marketing consultant, was banned from the sport for life in a ruling last week by the IAAF ethics commission. Two Russian officials were also banned for life for engaging in blackmail, bribery and extortion to cover up a doping case involving Russian marathoner Liliya Shobuhkova.

A fourth official, former IAAF anti-doping director Gabriel Dolle, received a five-year ban.

Pound's first report, issued in November, detailed a state-sponsored doping program in Russia involving corruption and cover-ups. That led the IAAF to suspend Russia's track and field federation, leaving its athletes in danger of missing this year's Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

The new report said Lamine Diack essentially ran the IAAF as his own fiefdom, with "a close inner circle" that functioned "as an illegitimate governance structure," including when it came to Russian doping. The inner circle included Diack's son and his personal lawyer, Habib Cisse, who functioned as a "powerful rogue group."

Richard McLaren, a member of the commission, said Diack's inner circle may also have corrupted the process of selecting and not selecting cities for IAAF world championships and sponsorship deals. He recommended that more investigation was needed on those suspicions.

The investigators suspect athletes from other countries may also have been blackmailed and they may only have so far examined "the tip of the iceberg" of efforts to extort athletes, McLaren said.

The report came two days after the AP released details from six years of IAAF internal emails, reports and notes showing a high level of communication between the athletics federation and Russian officials about suspicious test results from the nation's athletes, including plans to cover up some doping evidence.

AP

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/5a5cc8345b214d5794e40d8ce3df8cef/ap-newsbreak-report-says-putin-may-have-consulted-doping?utm_campaign=AP_Sports&utm_source=SocialFlow&utm_medium=Twitter

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