WADA Recommends Banning All Russian Athletes From Rio Olympics

The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has recommended that Russian athletes in all sports be denied entry to the 2016 Rio Olympics in the wake of the McLaren Report’s assertions of a massive state-sponsored doping program.

The McLaren report dropped earlier today, alleging – among other things – that Moscow’s anti-doping lab worked to cover up positive tests of Russian athletes, that Russia’s Ministry of Sport was in control of the program, that the FSB (Russian federal security service) and CSP (Center of Sports Preparation in Russia) actively participated in the process, and that the program affected multiple sports in both summer and winter Olympic lineups.

Russia’s athletics program (which governs track & field events) is already banned from Rio, with individual athletes able to compete under a neutral banner if they can prove they are clean of banned substances.

WADA released a statement with its recommendations today, starting the list with the recommendation to bar Russian athletes in all sports from the Rio Games. The full statement is here.

WADA makes sure to note that it does not have authority to ban Russian athletes itself. Its recommendation calls on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to deny the entries of any athletes under the Russian Olympic Committee or Russian Paralympic Committee.

Yesterday, before the McLaren Report had been published, the United States Anti-Doping Agency and the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sports called for a ban of all Russian athletes.

FINA (the international governing body for swimming) criticized the calls for a ban on the grounds that the calls came before the McLaren Report, which was supposed to be confidential at that point. FINA also expressed concern that WADA was trying to raise support for an all-sport ban on Russia.

FINA hasn’t publicly commented on the McLaren report since its publication.

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Brad Flood
5 years ago

2016 Thumbs UP!!!!!!

5 years ago

I have serious doubts that this will happen. Unfortunately Russia with the amount of money they pay under the table won’t be excluded. The politics and shady dealings that take place are something we can’t even begin the fathom

Reply to  ShakeMyHead
5 years ago

They could totally afford Ted Wells to do an independent investigation on their behalf. Free Brady

5 years ago


bobo gigi
5 years ago

Putin and his entire government should resign.
I know, I’m a dreamer. 🙂

Big Time
Reply to  bobo gigi
5 years ago

And we love you for it ❤️

Joel Lin
5 years ago

This is a very powerful move and statement by WADA. If the IOC is ambivalent to this there will be ongoing PR nightmares and consequences.

5 years ago

“Prove they’re clean?” What does that even mean? Pass a drug test like every other athlete has to? Yet another sanction with no real teeth. If a federation is involved in conduct that is so egregious that the whole federation is banned, individual members of the federation should be banned, period.

5 years ago

I’ve known there is widespread doping in Russia since my first viewing of Rocky IV…

5 years ago

I think they should also deny entry to russian atheletes with prior doping violation regardless of whether or not they can prove they are clean. Just my 2 cents

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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