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MOSCOW, December 5. /TASS/. Russia’s track-and-field athletics federation has dismissed the documentary containing speculations over doping practices in Russian sports, aired on Germany’s ARD channel, as a provocation against Russian sports, the federation’s chief, Valentin Balakhnichev, said.
The ARD’s documentary entitled Geheimsache Doping (Secret Doping Case) claimed that some Russian athletes had systematically taken prohibited formulas on instructions from their coaches.
“Even a quick look at the film is enough to ask well-founded questions about the authenticity of the footage,” the federation’s press-service quotes Balakhnichev as saying. “In the film, one hears claims by five persons, whose statements are hardly credible, because each of them had been exposed as a doping abuser and has personal reasons to have personal dislike towards other athletes, coaches and track and field federation athletes and the Russian anti-doping agency RUSADA.”
RUSADA declared on Friday that it would conduct its own investigation of the personalities featuring in the documentary.
Russian 800-metre woman runner Yulia Stepanova, who in February 2013 was disqualified for two years for taking doping, told the ARD that the senior coach of Russia’s track-and-field team, Alexey Melnikov, shared the responsibility for Russian athletes taking prohibited formulas.