MOSCOW, February 1. /TASS/. The verdict by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) should return the Russian national squad to first place in the unofficial team classification of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. According to the court’s news release, the individual results of 28 athletes achieved in Sochi have been reinstated. However, this decision has to be endorsed by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).
Russian athletes took home 33 medals at the Sochi Games, including 13 gold, 11 silver and 9 bronze. Norway came in second in the unofficial medal count (11-5-10, with 26 medals). CAS confirmed that bobsledder Alexander Zubkov’s results had been cancelled, while rulings on the appeals of biathletes Olga Zaytseva, Olga Vilukhina and Yana Romanova are still pending. That means that Zubkov’s two gold medals and two silver medals in the biathlon (won by Vilukhina) are being cut out of the total number of medals won by Russian athletes.
Thus, despite the equal number of gold medals with the Norwegian team, the Russians, nonetheless, have more silver medals. If the CAS decision is confirmed, the Russian team’s medal tally will come to 11 gold, nine silver and nine bronze medals.
In July 2016, the IOC created two panels of inquiry to look into the findings of the Richard McLaren-led commission on doping abuse in Russian sports. One of them, led by Denis Oswald, retested the doping samples of participants in the 2014 Olympics. The retests found no prohibited substances in the Russian athletes’ doping samples. However, scratches detected on the test tubes and high salt content in some samples made the inquiry suspect some tampering might have taken place. The IOC used the Oswald probe’s conclusions as grounds for its decision to slap a series of lifetime bans on Russian athletes, and annul their results at the Sochi Olympics.