MOSCOW, February 17. /TASS/. It is a priority to establish the truth in the case of Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva in the near future, Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin told the Rossiya-24 TV channel.
On February 7, Russian figure skaters Kamila Valieva, Mark Kondratyuk, Anastasia Mishina, Alexander Gallyamov, Viktoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov won the gold in the figure skating team event at the Beijing Olympic Games. The International Testing Agency announced on February 11 that the award ceremony for the event had been postponed due to a positive doping test that Valieva, 15, did on December 25. The Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) imposed a temporary suspension on Valieva, which she successfully appealed the following day. The International Olympic Committee (IOC), the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and the International Skating Union (ISU) filed appeals against this decision but the Court of Arbitration for Sport rejected them on February 14.
"It’s crucial that her right to participate in the Olympics was eventually restored, there is no connection between the tests that she did right before the Olympic Games with her performance at the Olympics, the tests turned out to be negative there. Her condition during the short program spoke of anxiety and emotional fatigue. However, she managed to overcome that, which proves that she’s the best. We believe, and we have always said it, that she is innocent. The Sports Ministry, our lawyers and the ROC (Russian Olympic Committee - TASS) are doing everything to prevent emotions from affecting her performance and, most importantly, make sure that the truth is established in the near future," Matytsin pointed out.
Valieva finished first in the short program with a score of 82.16. Another Russian figure skater Anna Shcherbakova took second place (80.20) and Japan’s Kaori Sakamoto came in third (79.84). The women’s free skate event is scheduled for later on Thursday.
Valieva, 15, coached by Eteri Tutberidze, is the current Russian and European champion. She holds world records in the short program (90.45 points) and free skate (185.29 points), as well as in total (272.71).