Russian junior cross-country ski champ banned for doping
MOSCOW (AP) — Russian sports authorities say the country’s reigning national junior cross-country skiing champion over 50 kilometers has been banned for doping.
Nikita Mashkin, 20, was banned for an unspecified “breach of anti-doping rules” along with female youth skier Arina Kalinina, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency said in a statement. Both were hit with two-year sanctions.
The bans come at a time when Russian sport is under pressure from multiple doping scandals.
Last month, cross-country skiing was among several sports in which the Russian anti-doping agency was alleged to have covered up positive tests for leading athletes, according to former agency official Vitaly Stepanov’s statements in a documentary on German TV channel ARD.
Stepanov’s accusations helped prompt an investigation into Russian sport by the World Anti-Doping Agency.