Panel to decide Russian figure skater's Olympic fate following revelation of failed doping test

Kamila Valieva
Posted at 7:35 AM, Feb 11, 2022

BEIJING — Russian Kamila Valieva's right to compete in the women's individual figure skating event at the Beijing Olympics will be decided at an urgent hearing at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

The International Testing Agency says it will lead an appeal on behalf of the IOC against a decision by Russia's anti-doping agency to lift a provisional ban imposed on the 15-year-old Valieva for failing a doping test in December.

The Russian newspaper RBC reported this week that Valieva had tested positive for a banned heart medication. The sample was reportedly obtained in December when Valieva was still in Russia but did not come to light until after she had helped her team win a gold medal in women's team figuring skating.

If the Russian team is disqualified, the U.S. would be elevated to gold. Japan would be elevated to silver, and fourth-place finisher Canada — the defending champion in the team event — would receive the bronze medal.

Valieva made history during the team event, becoming the first woman to land a quadruple jump. She is also the heavy favorite in the women's individual event that begins Tuesday.

Russia is currently serving a punishment connected to a widespread doping state-sponsored doping scandal during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. Russian athletes cannot compete under their country name and flag at the Beijing games. Instead, they're being referred to as the "Russian Olympic Committee."

The IOC has been criticized for not doling out harsher punishment to Russia following the 2014 doping scandal.