IOC Suspends Second Russian Olympic Champion In One Week But Russia Gets To Keep Golden Medal

The situation with the Olympic doping in cross country skiing is getting more and more difficult to comprehend.

Last week Alexander Legkov had lost his Olympic Golden medal for the 50k race thus – formally – ceding the title to the second placed Maxim Vylegzhanin, both of Russia.

But not for long.

Because today the IOC’s Oswald Commission had disqualified Vylegzhanin as well – and then the Golden medal goes to…Ilia Chernousov of Russia, who came third.

How does this bode with the allegations of the “Russian state sponsored doping program”? Was it only for certain athletes on the Russian team, but not for the others?

The IOC decision appears to be based almost exclusively on  the so-called McLaren Report, which does not seem to explain or even address “the issue of selectivity” in Team Russia at all.

Chernousov, one of the leading Russian skiers at the time, was never under any suspicion, not included in any reports and, unlike Legkov and Vylegzhanin, never suspended.

A newly minted Olympic champion’s reaction is not known, but Sergey Dolidovich of Belarus has, apparently, commented, saying that he wouldn’t have problem shaking Legkov or Vylegzhanin’s hand – Dolidovich who came fifth in the race is now an official Bronze medalist of Sochi.

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Sauna after training

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