A verdict in the Beijing Olympics doping case of Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva should be given by the end of January, the Court of Arbitration for Sport said on Friday after a fifth day of appeal proceedings.
The new deadline set by CAS should resolve the case nearly two years after the then-15-year-old’s doping test rocked the 2022 Winter Games in China.
Valieva’s positive test for a banned heart medication was revealed only after she helped the Russians win Olympic team gold in Beijing – and more than six weeks after the sample was taken at the national championship she won in St. Petersburg. The testing laboratory in Stockholm, Sweden, cited staffing issues during the COVID-19 pandemic for the delayed result.
No medals in the team event were ever awarded in Beijing, where the United States took silver, Japan the bronze and Canada placed fourth. They are in line to be upgraded if Valieva is disqualified.
Valieva’s defense has been that her positive test was caused by accidental contamination — maybe from a glass or plate — by tablets her grandfather claimed he took.
She placed fourth in the women’s event with a mistake-filled free program under intense scrutiny and pressure. A previous CAS panel meeting in Beijing had allowed her to continue competing despite the positive test.
A panel of CAS judges heard three days of testimony in September and two more this week. Valieva testified by video link from Russia.
The World Anti-Doping Agency has requested a ban through December 2025.
Valieva has not skated internationally since Beijing because of an ISU ban on Russians following the country’s invasion of Ukraine.
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