If you want to make your blood boil, read on.
This is surely a bad joke.
It shows just how corrupt the entire IOC/CAS/WADA anti-doping set-up really is.
Twenty-eight Russian athletes had their Olympic doping bans overturned on Thursday, throwing the International Olympic Committee’s policy on Russian doping into turmoil.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled that evidence was “insufficient” that the 28 — including several medallists — had broken anti—doping rules at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi.
The 28 who had their bans lifted could now seek late entry into the Pyeongchang Games, which open February 9.
Eleven more were ruled to have been guilty of doping, but had lifetime bans cut to a ban from the Pyeongchang Games alone.
CAS said it “unanimously found that the evidence put forward by the IOC in relation to this matter did not have the same weight in each individual case. In 28 cases, the evidence collected was found to be insufficient to establish that an anti-doping rule violation was committed by the athletes concerned.”
The IOC has already invited 169 Russians to the Pyeonchang Olympics under a neutral flag, but may now be forced to allow in athletes it deems dopers, eight days before the Games begin.
It wasn’t immediately clear how many of the 28 Russians would now seek to compete. Some have already retired from competitive sports.
Those reinstated at the Sochi Olympics include skeleton luge gold medallist Alexander Tretiakov and cross-country ski gold medallist Alexander Legkov.
Russia won’t win back some medals, such as in the men’s four-man bobsled, where two crew members were disqualified and two reinstated. Both of the gold medal-winning two-man bobsled crew remain banned.
The IOC last year banned 43 Russians over doping offences at the Sochi Olympics, ruling they had been part of a scheme to dope.
The Russian director of the laboratory which handled samples for the Sochi Games, Grigory Rodchenkov, said he gave cocktails of banned steroids to athletes and swapped tainted samples for clean urine on orders from Russian state sports officials.
The Russian government vehemently denies ever supporting doping. Three more appeals, all involving retired biathlon competitors, will be heard later.
ATHLETES WITH BANS LIFTED:
Alexander Legkov (cross-country skiing, GOLD, SILVER) Aleksei Negodailo (bobsleigh, GOLD) Dmitry Trunenkov (bobsleigh, GOLD) Aleksander Tretiakov (skeleton, GOLD) Maxim Vylegzhanin (cross-country skiing, 3x SILVER) Albert Demchenko (luge, 2x SILVER) Alexander Bessmertnykh (cross-country skiing, SILVER) Nikita Kryukov (cross-country skiing, SILVER) Tatyana Ivanova (luge, SILVER) Olga Fatkulina (speed skating, SILVER) Elena Nikitina (skeleton, BRONZE) Olga Stulneva (bobsleigh) Liudmila Udobkina (bobsleigh) Evgeniy Belov (cross-country skiing) Natalia Matveeva (cross-country skiing) Alexey Petukhov (cross-country skiing) Evgenia Shapovalova (cross-country skiing) Tatiana Burina (ice hockey) Ekaterina Lebedeva (ice hockey) Ekaterina Pashkevich (ice hockey) Anna Shchukina (ice hockey) Ekaterina Smolentseva (ice hockey) Sergei Chudinov (skeleton) Maria Orlova (skeleton) Olga Potylitsyna (skeleton) Artem Kuznetcov (speed skating) Alexander Rumyantsev (speed skating) Ivan Skobrev (speed skating)
BAN UPHELD BUT LIFE BAN REDUCED TO BAN FROM PYEONGCHANG:
Aleksandr Zubkov (bobsleigh, 2x GOLD) Alexey Voevoda (bobsleigh, 2x GOLD) Alexander Kasyanov (bobsleigh) Ilvir Khuzin (bobsleigh) Aleksei Pushkarev (bobsleigh) Yulia Chekaleva (cross-country skiing) Anastasia Dotsenko (cross-country skiing) Julia Ivanova (cross-country skiing) Inna Dyubanok (ice hockey) Anna Shibanova (ice hockey) Galina Skiba (ice hockey) CASES POSTPONED: Olga Vilukhina (biathlon, 2x SILVER) Yana Romanova (biathlon, SILVER) Olga Zaytseva (biathlon, SILVER)