Russian State-Run Media Says FINA to Decide on Morozov, Lobintsev

Both the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) and FINA have taken up the need for decisions on two Russian swimmers, Vlad Morozov and Nikita Lobintsev, ahead of the swimming portion of the 2016 Rio Olympic Games that start next Saturday.

According to Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko in an interview with Russian state-run media TASS, FINA is expected to decide on Saturday whether the pair will be allowed to compete in the Olympic Games.

FINA named them as two of three swimmers who were a part of the “disappearing positives” program run by Russian doping authorities that turned positive tests into negative (clean) tests. The IOC has instructed International Federations that all athletes who have previously been sanctioned for doping violations or who were named in the McLaren IP report related to the disappearing positive tests were ineligible for the Olympics, but largely put the onus on international federations – who have been a mixed bag of how strictly to enforce the broader IOC directives.

The CAS has announced that a hearing for the two (with no mention of the third swimmer, Daria Ustinova) will be the first of the temporary court set up in Rio de Janeiro for the purpose of quickly reviewing disputes that arrive at the Olympic Games.

Both WADA and FINA have refused to release more information on what the specific accusations against the swimmers are, though the typically-detailed CAS decision reports should shed more light on the matter.

The press release from the CAS:

Rio de Janeiro, 30 July 2016 – The ad hoc Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games has registered its first procedures. The Russian swimmers Vladimir Morozov and Nikita Lobintsev have each filed a request for arbitration against the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Swimming Federation (FINA).

Both swimmers request CAS to declare the decision of the IOC Executive Board of 24 July 2016 (paragraph 2) invalid and unenforceable. Such paragraph sets out the new criteria for the admission of Russian athletes at the Olympic Games in Rio. The swimmers also request that the decision of the FINA Bureau of 25 July 2016, declaring both of them ineligible for the Olympic Games in Rio, be set aside. Furthermore, they request that the IOC validates the entries submitted by the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) for them to compete in the Olympic Games in Rio.

A Panel of arbitrators from the CAS ad hoc Division will be constituted shortly and will determine the next steps in these two procedures. The final decisions will be announced by media release.

Mutko, however, says the case might not get that far.

“A decision on swimming is due today,” he said. “26 people have passed, and there are no questions to Morozov and Lobintsev, but for some reason they are on the report made by McLaren. But today, the swimming federation should decide, thus we shall have either 24 or 26 people.”

Russia originally submitted an approved roster of 35 pool swimmers from the Olympics. With 6 pool swimmers eliminated, it’s not clear how the team got from 35 to 24 and who else might have been cut.

Morozov has denied any wrongdoing, citing clean test results from doping agencies around the world, including the United States, the United Kingdom, and FINA’s own testing program. Lobintsev has not made a public comment on the McLaren report, but this week did accept a “no-fault” finding for a positive test for Meldonium in the United States.

FINA has made several statements opposed to the suspension of Russian swimmers, including the president Julio Maglione declaring that WADA had ‘exceeded its powers.’

For more, see a full listing of articles related to the McLaren IP report here.

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5 years ago

Cornel and Julio are staring at the check from Russia begging the IOC to let them
Cash it

Reply to  Swimmom
5 years ago

There was an article in the guardian where a sports lawyer who has won many CAS cases says these feds could be up for millions if the suppositions in the McClaren report are found to be incorrect .

This is one lawyer vs another .& he does not believe the term’protected’ necessarily means positive. Maybe FINA might be protecting its assetts if they let them through . I think they’d be seking legal advice that they can bank on more than a bribe.

Reply to  Swimmom
5 years ago

Russia don’t need to send more checks to Cornel and Julio, all the Russians have to do is to remind Cronel and Julio about those checks.
The International Weightlifting Federation have the guts to ban the entire Russian team for the same reason of “disappearing positives”. It will be disastrous for IOC if FINA change their mind or CAS let Morozov and Lobintsev in.

5 years ago

Isnt the media in the US state run too?

Reply to  cheatinvlad
5 years ago

Yep, most mainstream news outlets in the U.S. act essentially as PR machines for the state department.

But to the topic. I was looking forward to seeing Vlad compete at Rio and part of me, rightly or wrongly, still wants to see him race. Who can know for sure if he tested positive? Who can know for sure that any athlete has been clean their whole career?

Reply to  StraightArm
5 years ago

Not really sure how true that statement is

Reply to  StraightArm
5 years ago

I can answer your question.

Adrian, Dressel, McEvoy, Chalmers, Campbell sisters have been clean.

Ning Zetao, Morozov, Lobintsev, Sun Yang, Herasimenia, Park Tae Hwan, Jessica Hardy, Efimova have not been clean.

Reply to  NotSoFastSwimmer
5 years ago

If there had not been politically driven turmoil at ASADA perhaps Thorpe’s epi ratios numbers might not not have seen the light of day. Its not for me to understand the reasons why but it was a fail. No case to answer didn’t make us any the wiser except that such readings depend on a sympathetic analyser. It in itself is not a bad thing – I once had a pathology test that was looked at by 5 doctors with 50-50 & one deciding the case because they had actually seen me not just a FNA.

I had some worries when Cate said she turned to Chinese Medicine to help her over her GFS & that a substance might… Read more »

Reply to  G.I.N.A
5 years ago

CFS – chronic fatigue syndrome .

Reply to  NotSoFastSwimmer
5 years ago

And you know this how?

Reply to  CoachK
5 years ago

Results of doping control.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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