The president of the International Biathlon Union, Anders Besseberg, says that 3 Russian biathletes tested positive for a blood doping agent, which he claims is a new drug, not EPO. To the Khaleej Times:
So far the names of the three athletes have not been revealed because the results from the analysis of their B samples have yet to be released.
International Biathlon Union (IBU) president Anders Besseberg is reported as saying the trio had not been caught using EPO (erythropoietin), the banned blood booster which has been popular with endurance athletes.
‘We’re not talking about EPO. This is a completely new medication,’ the Russian media quoted Besseberg as saying.
‘I consider this a serious breakthrough in our fight against doping.’
What drug contaminated the athletes, as reported by Besseberg? Could it be the newer CERA EPO?
Besseberg stressed that the names of the alleged dope cheats would not be revealed before their B samples were tested.
However Russian daily Komsomolskaya Pravda, citing unofficial sources, on Wednesday named Ekaterina Iourieva, Albina Akhatova and Dmitry Yaroshenko as the athletes who tested positive.
Iourieva leads the women’s overall World Cup standings having claimed her second win of the season on January 25 in the mass-start event in Antholz, Italy.
Earlier this week the IBU informed the Russian Biathlon Union of the failed tests by two women and one man on December 5 last year at a World Cup event at Ostersund, Sweden.
Other reports last month said that Russian biathlete Ivan Cherezov tested positive for high levels of hemoglobin -- which indicates blood doping. However, Russian news agency Tass skewered reports of Russian biathletes using blood doping.