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Over 1,000 Russian athletes involved in ‘unprecedented’ doping – Wada

Over 1,000 Russian athletes engaged in “unprecedented” systematic doping according to major findings from the World Anti-Doping Agency.

Unveiling the second part of its report into drugs abuses, Wada’s chief investigator Richard McLaren said the findings confirmed “doping that took place in Russia on unprecedented scale” in summer and winter sports.

“Over 1,000 Russian athletes can be identified as having benefited from manipulations to conceal positive doping tests”, said Mr McLaren, a Canadian law professor.

Russian authorities were part of “systematic and centralised cover up”, said Mr McLaren, who said the findings were based on “immutable facts” from forensic testing rather than verbal testimony from athletes.

Cheating methods included the swapping of urine samples in the Winter Olympics at Sochi in 2014 – a practice that was widespread among summer and winter athletes, said the report.

In one example cited by the report, two female ice hockey player samples were swapped with male DNA at the Sochi games.

Other findings revealed the presence of “physiologically impossible salt readings” among female medal winners.

Professor McLaren was asked to investigate doping at Sochi 2014 after Grigory Rodchenkov, a former head of Rusada, the Russian anti-doping agency, told The New York Times in May that Russia had systematically cheated during the competition.

All evidence from the investigation has now been submitted to Wada allowing “relevant federations to pursue anti-doping cases where appropriate”, said Mr McLaren.

Image courtesy of AP

Via FT