Road To The Olympic Games

Biathlon

Russian gold-medal biathlete embroiled in doping scandal retires

Anton Shipulin, a world biathlon champion at the heart of Russia's doping scandal, announced his retirement on Tuesday.

Anton Shipulin helped Russia to relay win in Sochi but didn't compete in Pyeongchang

Russia's Anton Shipulin, a world biathlon champion at the heart of Russia's doping scandal, announced his retirement on Tuesday. (Matthias Schrader/The Associated Press)

Anton Shipulin, a world biathlon champion at the heart of Russia's doping scandal, announced his retirement on Tuesday.

Shipulin, 31, told a news conference in Moscow that he decided to retire after he was barred from the Winter Olympics earlier this year. He is one of scores of Russian athletes banned from competing for being part of Russia's state-sponsored doping program at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi. Shipulin won a gold medal in Sochi's biathlon relay race.

Shipulin, like many other Russian athletes, has vehemently denied the accusations.

He said on Tuesday it's "better to leave now than win spots far from the pedestal" and blamed "the political climate" for his poor results. Shipulin's last race will be in Germany later this week.

'Witch hunt'

The Russian national team was barred from the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games in February. The International Olympic Committee issued invitations for 168 Russians who competed under the Olympic flag as "Olympic Athletes from Russia."

Austrian police, meanwhile, said earlier this month they're investigating 10 members of Russia's biathlon team for doping and fraud offences allegedly committed around the 2017 world championships in Austria. Prosecutors said those accused have been formally notified that they are under investigation but did not name the suspects.

Shipulin dismissed the Austrian investigation as a "witch hunt." No Russian athletes in any sport have yet faced criminal prosecutions for a series of doping scandals that led to the country's team being suspended from this year's Winter Olympics.

Broadcast Partners

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.