Beijing [China], February 11 (ANI): The International Testing Agency on Friday confirmed that fifteen-year-old Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva was tested positive for a banned heart medication in December.
Valieva starred in Russian Olympic Committee's (ROC) victory in the team event in Beijing on Monday. The ITA and the International Olympic Committee are now challenging the lifting of the provisional suspension.
"To state the facts chronologically, a sample from the athlete was collected under the testing authority and results management authority of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) on 25 December 2021 during the 2022 Russian Figure Skating Championships in Saint Petersburg, Russia. The WADA-accredited laboratory of Stockholm, Sweden, reported that the sample had returned an Adverse Analytical Finding (AAF) for the non-specified prohibited substance trimetazidine (classified as S4. Hormone and Metabolic Modulators according to the Prohibited List of the World Anti-Doping Code) on 8 February 2022. Following this, the athlete was provisionally suspended by RUSADA with immediate effect," ITA in a statement said.
Pursuant to Article 15 of the IOC Anti-Doping Rules applicable to the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, the decision of RUSADA imposing a provisional suspension automatically prohibited the athlete from participation in all sports during the provisional suspension, including the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022.
"As the sample was collected by RUSADA ahead of the Winter Games, this case is not under the jurisdiction of the IOC and thus not directly managed by the ITA. In line with the IOC Anti-Doping Rules, the ITA immediately informed the athlete that the provisional suspension imposed on her by RUSADA is binding upon the IOC and the athlete is prevented from competing, training, coaching, or participating in any activity, during the Olympic Winter Games," statement added.
The athlete challenged the imposition of the provisional suspension before the RUSADA Disciplinary Anti-Doping Committee on February 9, 2022, and a hearing took place on the same day. On the evening of February 9, the RUSADA Disciplinary Anti-Doping Committee decided to lift the athlete's provisional suspension, thus allowing her to continue her participation in the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022. The reasoned decision, including the grounds for which the provisional suspension was lifted, will be issued shortly to all concerned parties.
Under the World Anti-Doping Code, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the International Skating Union (ISU), RUSADA and the IOC have a right to appeal the decision to lift the provisional suspension before the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS). The IOC will exercise its right to appeal and not to wait for the reasoned decision by RUSADA, because a decision is needed before the next competition the athlete is due to take part in (Women Single Skating, February 15, 2022).
Following the delegation of the IOC's anti-doping program in relation to the Olympic Games to the ITA, the ITA will lead the appeal before CAS on behalf of the IOC.
The proceedings on the merits of the apparent anti-doping rule violation, including the athlete's right to request the analysis of the B-sample, will be pursued by RUSADA in due course.
The decision on the results of the ROC team in the Team Figure Skating event can be taken by the ISU only after a final decision on the full merits of the case has been taken. The procedure, which is initiated currently, can only address the provisional suspension. (ANI)