EXPLAINER: the Drug Behind Russia's Olympic Skating Case

By GRAHAM DUNBAR, AP Sports activities Author

BEIJING (AP) — The primary large doping case on the Beijing Olympics entails one in every of its largest stars. And it appears removed from easy, not least as a result of she is simply 15 years previous and has protections as a minor within the anti-doping rule e book.

The nation on the middle of it? Russia. Once more.

Here is a have a look at the drug that Kamila Valieva of the Russia Olympic Committee — the identify below which Russia is competing due to earlier doping violations — is suspected of taking, and the way the scenario may play out in coming days.

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The remedy trimetazidine is a metabolic agent that helps forestall angina assaults and treats the signs of vertigo, in response to the European Union’s medicines company. It may possibly enhance blood circulate effectivity and enhance endurance — each essential to any high-end athletic efficiency.

It’s on the prohibited checklist managed by the World Anti-Doping Company within the class of “hormone and metabolic modulators.”

Essentially the most well-known case of trimetazidine in sports activities doping concerned Chinese language star swimmer Solar Yang.

The three-time Olympic champion served a three-month ban in 2014 in a ruling that was initially not revealed by China’s anti-doping company.

As a result of it was Solar’s first doping offense, he was punished extra severely for his second, and extra high-profile, offense of refusing to cooperate with a pattern collections staff at his dwelling in China.

Russian bobsledder Nadezhda Sergeeva examined constructive for trimetazidine on the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics. She was disqualified from the two-woman bob occasion and served an eight-month ban.


The athlete-testing program for the Olympics is run by the Worldwide Testing Company, primarily based within the IOC’s dwelling metropolis Lausanne, Switzerland.

Typical Olympic doping circumstances are dealt with and introduced by the ITA, which imposes a provisional suspension that removes an athlete from competitors.

Athletes and their groups can problem these choices on the Court docket of Arbitration for Sport which is in Beijing to deal with pressing circumstances. It has a games-time panel of judges to specialise in doping circumstances.

Past the Olympics, an athlete’s governing physique — on this case, the Worldwide Skating Union (ISU) — ought to handle a disciplinary case that usually results in a ban.

Valieva’s circumstances may very well be extra sophisticated if, as reported, the pattern in query was taken earlier than the official Olympic interval started at an ISU occasion.

On the Tokyo Olympics, Nigerian sprinter Blessing Okagbare was pulled from competing forward of the 100-meters semifinal when a pre-Video games take a look at returned as constructive. Her suspension was imposed by monitor and area’s Athletics Integrity Unit.

Valieva’s case additionally ought to contain the Worldwide Olympic Committee as a result of she and the ROC staff already competed and received the determine skating staff occasion.

Stripping titles and re-allocating medals must be the duty of a disciplinary committee chaired by Denis Oswald, a long-time IOC member and Swiss lawyer.

One other complicating issue is Valieva’s age, which may give her additional safety.

The World Anti-Doping Code lessons minors as a “one who has not reached the age of eighteen years.”

Whereas public disclosure of circumstances is necessary for grownup athletes, for minors the query of figuring out them “shall be proportionate to the info and circumstances of the case.”

The circumstances of Valieva’s case also needs to give attention to the recommendation and choices of her staff officers and coaches.

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