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Athletics doping scandal: 15 things to know

The track and field doping scandal continues to evolve as the Russian athletics federation makes moves to reform following the release of a new WADA report incriminating IAAF executives.

Russian athletics elect new president, latest in string of updates

In this 2006 file photo, Lamine Diack, then president of the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF), speaks during the opening ceremony of the IAFF World Anti-Doping Symposium in Lausanne, Switzerland. (Salvatore Di Nolfi/The Associated Press)

It's been two months since the first World Anti-Doping Agency report on doping in athletics was released to the public and the investigation is still growing.

Recent reports uncover more international figures who participated in the scandal, while Russia is left scrambling to clean up its act before the 2016 Olympic Games.


Below are 15 major plot points from the initial investigation up until the most recent news and findings.

Part 1 of WADA report released Nov. 2015

  • Report finds Russia operated state-sponsored doping program that affected 2012 Olympic Games
  • Outlines cheating culture where athletes were left with little choice but to dope 
  • Russia's anti-doping operation declared out of compliance (as well as the operations of Israel, Andorra, Argentina, Bolivia, and Ukraine)
  • Head of Moscow lab intentionally destroyed almost 1,500 samples before WADA visit
  • Suggested that five coaches and five middle-distance runners (including two Olympians) be given lifetime bans
The whistleblowers who exposed Russia's doping system in track and field tell their story to our Adrienne Arsenault. 8:54

Report repercussions

  • Without an anti-doping agency, Russia cannot host or bid for international events
  • Russian athletics president Valentin Balakhnichev banned from sport for life
  • Russian track and field athletes provisionally suspended by the IAAF (also under investigation for role in doping scandal) and banned from competing in international competitions (including the Olympics)
  • Anti-doping leaders want Russian track athletes barred from 2016 Olympics

Part 2 of WADA report released Jan. 2016

  • Report showed evidence that six years ago, IAAF knew doping was so rampant in Russian athletics it feared athletes could die
  • Internal IAAF brief from 2012 showed ex-IAAF president Lamine Diack estimated 42 per cent of tested Russian athletes had doped
  • Report states Diack had questionable relations with Russian president Vladimir Putin regarding nine unresolved cases against Russian athletes before 2013 track world championships
  • Pound calls for restructuring of IAAF as corruption is "embedded in the organization"
New WADA report ties Vladimir Putin, ex-IAAF boss in doping scandal. 2:55

Russia responds

  • Russian athletics federation unanimously elected former coach Dmitry Shlyakhtin as new president
  • Shlyakhtin's goal to reinstate Russia back into Olympics and other international competitions

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