McLaren Report Confirms Evidence of Widespread, State-Sponsored Doping in Russian Sports


IOC meeting Tuesday to discuss sanctions; WADA recommends full Rio ban

An independent investigation led by a Canadian law professor has confirmed evidence of widespread, state-sponsored doping in Russian sports, further fuelling calls for a full ban on the country from next month’s Rio Olympics.

Richard McLaren of Western University in London, Ont., released his findings today at news conference in Toronto, saying labs in Moscow and Sochi protected Russian athletes.

In short, Russia’s deputy minister of sports, who was also part of Russia’s Olympic Committee, would direct workers at Moscow’s anti-doping laboratory of which positive samples to send through and which to hold back. Assisting the plan was Russia’s national security service — the FSB, the current version of the Soviet Union’s KGB.

McLaren said Russia’s cheating program, which he dubbed the “disappearing positive methodology,” lasted from 2011 — shortly after Russia’s disappointing showing at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics — through at least last year’s world swimming championships in Kazan, Russia. His timeframe includes the 2013 track and field world championships in Moscow.

McLaren said out of 577 positive sample screenings, 312 positive results were held back — or labeled “Save”‘ by the lab workers — but that was only a “small slice” of the data that could have been examined. More than 240 of the 312 “Saves”‘ came from track and field and wrestling, but other sports involved included swimming, rowing, snowboarding — and even table tennis.

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