Yulia Efimova Officially Added to Rio Start Lists

Russian swimmer Yulia Efimova has been officially added to the start lists for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. She will swim the 100 and 200 meter breaststrokes individually, and one would presume on the Russian 400 medley relay as well. This comes after some combination of FINA, the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided that Efimova would be eligible to compete in the Olympic Games in spite of an IOC directive that was set to exclude her.

Efimova has twice tested positive for banned substances – once in 2013 (for which she served a 16-month suspension) and once earlier this year for a newly-banned substance meldonium, for which she was found as having “no fault” after the World Anti-Doping Association (WADA) couldn’t determine how long the substance might remain in ones body after being outlawed on January 1st. Efimova is not currently suspended for anything, but the IOC ruled that no Russians who had previously been sanctioned for doping would be allowed in the Olympics after WADA accused the entire federation of covering up positive doping tests.

While the situation of who made the decision is still murky, Efimova was cleared to compete in Rio on Friday, and in a much-needed confirmation of the interpretation of that decision, has now been officially entered into the swimming events.

In the 100 breaststroke, Efimova will be the 2nd seed (start lists here) behind American Lilly King. She placed 4th in that event at the Beijing Olympics and 7th in London in 2012, and is also the defending World Champion. This will be Efimova’s first event, with prelims coming on Sunday morning.

In the 200 breaststroke, Efimova will be the 4th seed (start lists here). She is the 2013 World Champion in the 200 breaststroke and won bronze in London for her only career Olympic medal. This event begins Wednesday.

Natalia Lovtcova has also been added to the women’s 50 and 100 free.

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5 years ago


5 years ago

I hope people boo her

5 years ago

I hope she gets booed

Reply to  Luke
5 years ago

Only the best sportsmen will win. Now Russians have a chance as others. Rules are single for everyone and court confirmed this.

Olympic fan
Reply to  Mike
5 years ago

Mike- the best sportsmen follow rules and use their training to win-not drugs-every Russian has the same chance to win if they make the choice to make their gains with skill and training-not drug which give advantage as proven-court confirmed nothing-get your facts straight!

5 years ago

Might as well make doping completely legal. At least then everyone would be on a level playing field. This is PATHETIC. Cheaters always prosper nowadays.

Reply to  pinodee
5 years ago

SNL was ahead of the curve with their “All Drugs Olympics” parody skit back in the day

Olympic fan
Reply to  pinodee
5 years ago

Sadly-couldn’t agree more-perfectly said!

5 years ago

Honestly so angry about this decision. No athlete who cheats should be allowed to compete. Period. There should be no second thoughts for someone who doesn’t compete in the sport fairly. It’s almost like not disqualifying someone for a false start or something. She will be taking away a medal from someone who truly deserves it, and that is like punishing another athlete for her wrong doing. So disappointed.

5 years ago

sad, sad day for the sport of swimming and the anti-doping movement. Come on KING!

Reply to  clean?
5 years ago

Sad day for the sport of swimming, indeed. But then again, it was swimming (FINA) that helped put the brakes on a proposal to have a total all-sports ban on the entire Russian delegation. FINA starting to smell like FIFA???

5 years ago

Dopers win again.

5 years ago

OMG just go away

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. 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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