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Russian track and fielders remain to be most tested athletes for doping

A total of 766 national track and fielders have undergone testing, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency inspectors also collected doping samples of 160 swimmers, 144 cross-country skiers, 98 biathletes

MOSCOW, September 13. /TASS/. Russian track and field athletes remain to be the most tested since the start of the year for banned performance enhancing drugs compared to other sports, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) stated in a report on Friday.

The report states that in the period between January and August including, a total number of 766 national track and field athletes have undergone doping testing.

National weightlifters are second in the group of most tested athletes in Russia and within the same period of time their number reached 225, according to the report.

RUSADA inspectors also collected doping samples of 160 swimmers, 144 cross-country skiers and 98 biathletes.

The number of the tested Russian track and field athletes increased by the 30 compared to July, the report from RUSADA added.

Russian track and field athletes remain to be in a particular focus of RUSADA, since the All-Russia Athletics Federation (RusAF) is still trying to reinstate its membership status with the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

The IAAF suspended RusAF’s membership in November 2015, following a wave of anti-doping rules violations and formed a special mission on the issue. The IAAF Taskforce Group, led by Norwegian expert Rune Andersen, was set up to oversee Russia’s implementation of requirements for RusAF’s membership reinstatement with the IAAF.

The IAAF, however, permitted clean athletes from Russia to participate in international tournaments under the neutral status or the Authorized Neutral Athlete (ANA) until the membership of the RusAF was reinstated. The ANA status means that Russian track and field athletes are prohibited to compete under the national flag at the international tournaments.

The RusAF started accepting neutral status applications from national track and field athletes on December 19, 2018.

According to the IAAF regulations, the global athletics body has the right to disregard individual applications unaccompanied by an official document from the RusAF with all the necessary information, which the federation has in regard to a particular applicant. The document must also state whether the RusAF confirms that an applicant is in compliance with all requirements and whether it grants its own approval.