IOC Bans 11 Russian Winter Athletes for Life for Sochi 2014 Doping

IOC Bans 11 Russian Winter Athletes for Life for Sochi 2014 Doping

Russian Federation is set to lose two more medals from the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics after the latest raft of findings by the Oswald Commission were upheld by the International Olympic Committee on Friday.

In a statement, the International Olympic Committee said that among the sanctioned athletes are speed skaters Ivan Skobrev and Artem Kuznetcov, lugers Tatyana Ivanova and Albert Demchenko - silver medalists in Sochi 2004 - cross-country skiers Nikita Kryukov, Alexander Bessmertnykh, and Natalia Matveeva, bobsledders Liudmila Udobkina and Maxim Belugin, and ice hockey players Tatiana Burina and Anna Shchukina.

According to the International Olympic Committee, the decision was based on the results from the Oswald Commission hearings, "which are being conducted in the context of the Sochi 2014 forensic and analytic doping investigations".

The IOC held a meeting in Switzerland on Wednesday and published the guidelines for neutral athletes who will compete as "Olympic Athlete from Russia" or OAR in the Games.

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A possible boycott was avoided, however, probably due to concessions such as the name "Olympic Athlete from Russia" being inscribed on uniforms worn by athletes.

Silver medal-winning lugers Tatyana Ivanova and Albert Demchenko are among those to have been disqualified. The IOC prefers a shade "darker in color" than those "used in the Russian Federation flag". Bobsledders Liudmila Udobkina and Maxim Belugin and speed skaters Ivan Skobrev and Artem Kuznetsov also suffered disqualification. Twenty-two of those have lodged appeals at the Court of Arbitration for Sport, with the first of the appeals set to begin in January. Previously travellers from Seoul to Pyeongchang have mostly had to go by road - around a three hour drive.

Athletes Commission said it backed the athletes' decision.

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