Sports

Kamila Valieva: Russian figure skater can compete, but medal ceremony won't be held

Kamila Valieva
Posted at 8:44 AM, Feb 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-14 08:44:36-05

BEIJING — Russian teenager Kamila Valieva has been cleared to compete in the women's figure skating competition at the Winter Olympics despite failing a pre-Games drug test.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport released its ruling less than 12 hours after a hastily arranged hearing that lasted into early Monday that the 15-year-old Valieva, the favorite for the women's individual gold, does not need to be provisionally suspended ahead of a full investigation.

The IOC says it won't award medals for Valieva's events in Beijing because her doping case still hasn't been fully resolved.

Russian newspaper RBC reported last week that Valieva had tested positive for a banned heart medication. The sample was reportedly obtained in December when Valieva was still in Russia but did not come to light until she helped her team win a gold medal in women's team figuring skating.

During the team event, Valieva made history by becoming the first woman to land a quadruple jump.

If the Russian team is disqualified, the U.S. would be elevated to gold. Japan would be elevated to silver, and fourth-place finisher Canada — the defending champion in the team event — would receive the bronze medal.

Valieva is also the heavy favorite in the women's individual event that begins Tuesday.

Russia is currently serving a punishment connected to a widespread doping state-sponsored doping scandal during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Russian athletes cannot compete under their country name and flag at the Beijing games. Instead, they're being referred to as the "Russian Olympic Committee."

The IOC has been criticized for not doling out harsher punishment to Russia following the 2014 doping scandal.