MOSCOW, January 24. /TASS/. Testimonies by World Anti-Doping Agency informer Grigory Rodchenkov made at a meeting of the Court of Arbitration for Sports in Geneva disagree with his own statements published by the New York Times in May 2016, lawyer Artyom Patsev, who represents the interests of Russian athletes at the CAS hearings, said on his Facebook page.
The CAS on Monday began a series of hearings on appeals by 39 Russian athletes, whom the International Olympic Committee banned for life for alleged abuse of anti-doping rules in Sochi.
"The hearings were dramatic and emotional," Patsev said. "Rodchenkov’s testimonies in a number of respects disagreed with his own claims and versions presented previously (starting from the first one he shared with The New York Times in May 2016). As it was expected, Rodchenkov cannot make head or tail of his own testimonies and numerous versions of what he claims was a ‘government doping program.’ I do believe that the judges will take this into account. At least, in contrast to the Oswald commission, whose members clearly dozed off and even snored now and then, CAS judges listen very attentively to everything being said."
The New York Times on May 12, 2016 published the results of its own investigation based on evidence provided by Grigory Rodchenkov. It said Russia before the Winter Olympics in Sochi had launched a special doping program that involved several dozen athletes. They were rumored to take a cocktail of anabolic steroids to wash it down with alcohol, which played the role of an absorbent. The prohibited substances were absorbed into blood faster, while the window of detection narrowed. Also, Rodchenkov alleged certain manipulations were performed with a hundred doping samples of Russian athletes: test tubes with urine that contained traces of prohibited substances, he said, were replaced by clean samples taken earlier.
The CAS hearings will last till January 28. A decision on the cases of Russian athletes will follow by February 2. The 2018 Winter Olympics will be held in South Korean’s PyeongChang on February 9-25.