Figure skater in the singles: Valiewa is allowed to start despite positive doping tests

Figure skater in singles
Valiewa is allowed to start despite positive doping tests

Russian figure skater Kamila Valiyeva is allowed to compete in the individual competition at the Olympic Games. The International Court of Arbitration for Sport CAS decides that despite the positive doping test. The pressure on the 15-year-old is immense.

Despite strong suspicions of doping, Kamila Valiewa is allowed to run for her second gold medal in Beijing. The CAS sports judges ruled in favor of the 15-year-old Russian – and against the IOC and WADA. The rings organization and the doping hunters had appealed against the lifting of the suspension of the figure skating prodigy. However, the “case” of Valiyeva is not over – it is subject to change. And Katarina Witt demands consequences.

For now, the decision, made by the CAS ad hoc chamber at the Chinese capital’s Continental Grand Hotel, means only that Valiyeva will be allowed to compete in the Winter Games’ individual competition. It starts tomorrow Tuesday at the Capital Indoor Stadium with the short program, Valiewa is scheduled to hit the ice at 14:52 CET. Waliyewa can present her freestyle routine for Maurice Ravel’s Bolero with the unique quadruple jumps on Thursday.

But can she withstand the pressure? After all, the teenager has long been the focus of a political issue, for many observers the victim of an incorrigible system and a victim of a criminal environment. Not a stone cold scammer. Nevertheless, she will have to answer for the banned substance trimetazidine. Only after the return from China will it be about the Russian team gold, to which Valiyeva contributed a large part. “It’s a dilemma we’re all in,” said IOC spokesman Mark Adams.

15-year-old is particularly vulnerable

The CAS stated in its judgment that Valiewa was considered to be in need of special protection. The anti-doping rules of RUSADA and the WADA Code are also not sufficient for provisional suspensions for underage athletes. CAS Director General Matthieu Reeb also stressed the “irreparable damage” that exclusion from the Winter Games would have caused.

The Russian Anti-Doping Agency lifted Valiyeva’s suspension after just one day, but a number of questions remain unresolved. The most discussed: Why was the result of the rehearsal only known on February 8, one day after the team decision? The test took place on December 25. Corona cases in the laboratory in Stockholm are said to have delayed the evaluation.

The delay deprived Valiyeva of the opportunity “to meet certain legal requirements,” the CAS statement said. Reeb said, “We all wouldn’t be here if it had lasted a week or 10 days, as usual.”

Raising the minimum age?

Regardless of the CAS decision, figure skating legend Witt is hoping for a rethink from the International Olympic Committee and the ISU. “Perhaps the age for participation on the world Olympic stage should be set at 18,” Witt wrote on Facebook. The 15-year-olds belong in the youth games, “that’s what they were created for.”

Witt asks, “Wouldn’t it be right to let a child mature?” Instead of burning it up. Her trainer Eteri Tutberidze, who is notorious for her overly harsh methods, has to put up with this accusation. The list of young athletes who, driven by Tutberidze, rose to the top of the world and disappeared with mental or physical damage is long.

The IOC has already assured that it wants to illuminate Valiyeva’s environment. “We have the Entourage Commission,” spokesman Mark Adams said, “and we want WADA to investigate the team in this case.” This team also includes Filipp Schwezki, a doctor with a relevant doping past. Witt is convinced: “Valieva is not to blame.”

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