2012 Olympic finalist banned using evidence from Russian lab

August 18, 2022 GMT

MONACO (AP) — A Russian shot putter who reached the 2012 Olympic final was banned Thursday based on 10-year-old evidence of state-backed doping that had long been hidden in a Moscow laboratory database.

Irina Tarasova was banned for two years and disqualified from all her shot put results between July 2012 and July 2016, the Athletics Integrity Unit said.

Tarasova placed ninth in the Olympic final in London. She was also stripped of her results at the 2013 World Championships held in Moscow and 2014 European Championships in Zurich.

The AIU did not specify the evidence against Tarasova found at the Moscow testing laboratory that was part of a years-long standoff between the World Anti-Doping Agency and Russian authorities.

WADA asked Russia for a clean version of the Moscow database in 2018 to seek closure in the steroid-doping scandal that tainted the 2012 London Olympics and 2014 Sochi Winter Games.

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The program had relied on Moscow lab staff working with state authorities to hide positive drug tests and manipulate data input to the global anti-doping system.

WADA gave evidence to about 40 sports bodies including World Athletics since getting the database in 2019.

Tampering of the data prior to the handover led to a Court of Arbitration for Sport ruling that banned the Russian team name, flag and anthem from the Tokyo Olympics last year and Beijing Winter Games in February.

Tarasova, now 35, last competed internationally in 2015. Her ban, which expires in July 2024, also prevents her from working in sport.

In a separate database evidence case, the AIU disqualified results in 2012-14 for Olesya Sviridova, a Russian athlete in shot put and discus already serving a four-year ban for doping.

Both athletes can appeal against heir sanctions.

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