Appeal hearings begin for Russians ahead of Olympics

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) Final-ditch attraction hearings began Thursday for Russian athletes looking for admission to the Pyeongchang Olympics, someday earlier than the opening ceremony, as the full variety of appeals hit 60.

The primary competitions of the video games – together with a U.S.-Russia curling match – had already began when the Courtroom of Arbitration for Sport resumed its hearings at a luxurious resort within the mountains close to Pyeongchang.

The instances being heard concern forty five Russian athletes and two coaches, however CAS stated Thursday it’ll additionally hear new Russian instances involving six athletes and 7 help employees.

In attendance for the listening to are Elena Nikitina, the 2014 bronze medalist in ladies’s skeleton, and Tatiana Ivanova, a luger who gained silver within the group occasion in 2014.

On her approach to the listening to, Nikitina stated she was optimistic about profitable the case. Requested if she would struggle to the top, she stated: ”Sure, that’s what we’re doing.”

The Russians are looking for to overturn the Worldwide Olympic Committee’s choice to not invite them to the video games. In the event that they win, it will drive the IOC to simply accept athletes it considers to be linked to doping offenses.

The IOC gained’t touch upon particular person instances, however says its invitation course of was based mostly on proof from a newly obtained Moscow laboratory database detailing doping in earlier years.

Different athletes whose instances can be heard embrace Viktor Ahn, a six-time Olympic gold medalist briefly-monitor speedskating, and Alexander Legkov, a cross-nation snowboarding gold medalist.

Sergei Parkhomenko, the overall secretary of the Russian Bobsled Federation, stated athletes from his workforce have been coaching in Siberia, able to fly to South Korea at a second’s discover if CAS provides them the inexperienced mild.

”We’re hoping for a good and logical determination from the courtroom,” he stated. ”If there’s a constructive ruling, they’ll fly in.”

Russian officers and athletes have indicated that not all of those that have filed appeals plan to compete in the event that they win. Some are reportedly not in coaching, whereas others will not be included on full rosters in sports activities like hockey.

The six athletes who filed an attraction Thursday embrace two world champion speedskaters, Denis Yuskov and Pavel Kulizhnikov, plus athletes from biathlon and ski leaping.

All six have been initially refused invites to compete by the IOC. All have beforehand served bans of varied lengths for failed doping checks. The IOC had stated it wouldn’t invite athletes beforehand…

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