According to a report on Wednesday morning, two Russian athletes, one of whom was scheduled to compete at the upcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi, have failed doping tests just over a week before the Games begin.
Although no names were officially released in conjunction with the report, multiple outlets are saying one of the two Russian athletes is Irina Starykh. The 26-year-old is currently sixth in the international biathlon standings and was expected to compete for a medal in the event at Sochi.
The other biathlete is allegedly Ekaterina Iourieva, 30, who missed the 2010 Vancouver Olympics due to testing positive for EPO. Iourieva was not scheduled to compete for Russia at the upcoming Olympics.
Vitaly Mutko, Russia’s sports minister, told reporters he wasn’t aware of the positive drug tests:
I haven’t heard about this. I don’t have information of that kind. Maybe I’ve missed something, but it hasn’t been reported to me … I don’t know which of our biathletes could have been caught (RIA Novosti).
A Lithuanian biathlete was also implicated in the report.
[Source: RIA Novosti]