Published time: 13 May, 2016 15:21Edited time: 13 May, 2016 15:23
Russia says it might go to court over the groundless accusations that it has a so-called “doping program,” as allegations claiming Russian athletes used doping during 2014 Sochi Olympics have surfaced in a US media report.
A report released in the New York Times on Thursday cited the ex-chief of Russia’s anti-doping laboratory, Grigory Rodchenkov. He said Russian gold medal winners, including bobsledder Alexander Zubkov, cross-country skier Alexander Legkov and skeleton champion Alexander Tretyakov, doped during the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games.
In the report, the former chief of Russia’s anti-doping laboratory maintained he “dissolved the drugs in alcohol — Chivas whiskey for men, Martini vermouth for women.”
13 May 2016
The IOC told AP that it is ready to discuss the doping allegations with Rodchenkov, adding that if any wrongdoing had taken place the authority “will not hesitate to act decisively to punish those responsible and to defend the clean athletes.”
“We are already in touch with WADA to discuss to provide information on his claims [Rodchenkov].”
Rodchenkov’s statements in the NYT article are “groundless,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
“They …. are not based on reliable information,” Peskov said, adding that the allegations “look like slander from a defector.”
Cross-country skier Alexander Legkov said that the reasons behind the release of the NYT article are political.
“It is a political game. Everybody is set against our country because it is one of the strongest in the world,” he said at the press conference. He called Rodchenkov’s comments groundless.
The Russian Sports Ministry said it could sue the NYT over an article claiming the Russian team used doping during the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.
“Yes, we are considering a lawsuit,” Deputy Minister of Sports Yury Nagornykh told TASS. “They asked us to give comments on 66 athletes who are part of Russia’s ‘doping system’. We said that we don’t have such a program.”
Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko called the doping accusations “absurd.”
“Cocktails? It’s absurd. They [the athletes] were being monitored during and after the Olympics. The accusations against them …are groundless,” he said, adding that Russian authorities will thoroughly examine the article.
“Athletes drink Chivas before competing? I can’t take it seriously,” said cross country skier Sergey Ustiugov, who represented Russia in Sochi.
12 May 2016
The president of World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Craig Reedie told the Russian sports paper R-Sport that the statement from Rodchenkov is so far groundless, and the agency has already asked for more information and proof.Speaking about the Sochi Olympics, he said the laboratory worked with independent experts and hasn’t revealed any violations.
Vladislav Tretyak, president of the Ice Hockey Federation of Russia and three-time Olympic champion, told Russian Match TV he is “shocked.”
“[The Russian hockey] team was under the control of doping organizations. They could come at any time and take a sample. We need to understand and verify Rodchenkov’s words,” he added.
Source: RT World