The president of European Athletics says he does not expect Russian Athletics to regain its eligibility by the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald.
Russia’s athletics program (which governs track and field events) was suspended indefinitely earlier this year after a WADA report alleged massive institutional corruption in a state-sponsored doping program.
Russia has the opportunity to regain its eligibility internationally before the Rio Olympics, but at least one high-ranking source has expressed doubts the nation will be able to make that deadline.
Svein Arne Hansen, the president of European Athletics, says Russia’s federation needs a “cultural change” in order to regain its eligibility and does not think such a drastic change can happen by the Olympics, which are only abut seven months away.
“For the moment they have to fulfill the conditions, but I cannot really see them competing in Rio,” said Hansen in the Sydney Morning Herald piece.
“They must have a cultural change. They must get rid of all those people from before.”
At the moment, the ban does not concern Russia’s swimming federation. But we’ve been tracking the story’s major developments as Russian swimming has had its fair share of high-profile doping suspensions over the past few years. You can see the list in this piece, which also highlights the revelation in the WADA report that Moscow’s anti-doping lab (used to test samples from the 2015 FINA World Championships) was allegedly compromised.