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Russia not to boycott bobsleigh and skeleton world championship transferred from Sochi

December 14, 2016, 16:44 UTC+3

The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation announced earlier its decision to relocate the 2017 World Championship from the Russian resort city of Sochi to another venue

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© TASS/Stanislav Krasilnikov, archive

MOSCOW, December 14. /TASS/. The Russian bobsleigh and skeleton national team will not be boycotting the 2017 World Championship, which had been relocated from Russia’s resort city of Sochi, Alexander Zubkov, the president of the Russian Bobsleigh Federation, told TASS on Wednesday.

The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation (IBSF) announced on Tuesday night its decision to relocate the 2017 World Championship from the Russian resort city of Sochi to another venue, which would be determined by the end of the week. The decision was made in light of numerous allegations on doping abuse and manipulations in Russian sport.

"I give you a hundred percent guarantee that we will not be boycotting the bobsleigh and skeleton world championship, which will not be held in our country," Zubkov said in an interview with TASS. "We will come and prove that we are able to fight at any championship."

"We will also prove that we are the world leaders and will be fighting for medals," Zubkov added.

The 2017 IBSF World Championship was scheduled to be held at the Sochi Olympic facilities between February 13 and 26.

According to the Part 2 report, delivered last Friday in London by the WADA Independent Commission and its chairman, Canadian sports law professor Richard McLaren, over 1,000 Russian athletes competing in summer, winter and Paralympic sports could have been involved in the manipulations system to conceal positive doping tests.

McLaren’s Part Two report on Friday claimed in particular that doping samples of 12 Russian medalists of 2014 Winter Games in Sochi had been tampered with. In addition, doping tests of two more Russian athletes, who won four gold medals of the 2014 Sochi Olympics had been falsified as well.

The report did not mention particular names and McLaren later told TASS that the decision against making public the names of athletes, who are allegedly guilty of doping abuse, was made in respect to their private life, and, moreover, it should be done by international sports federations and not him personally.

Following the report, the Latvian and South Korean national bobsleigh and skeleton teams announced their decision to boycott the championship in Russia’s Sochi. A number of US and British athletes expressed similar intentions, while the German Olympic Committee proposed on Tuesday night to relocate the tournament and offered their facilities as the venue for the championship.

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