32. Russian Doping Scandal

Following an anti-doping investigation commissioned by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), 67 of the 68 Russian track-and-field athletes were banned from participating at the 2016 Rio Olympics, the lone exception being long-jumper Darya Klishina.

In total, out of the initially submitted list of 389 participants, 118 could not make it to the quadrennial event. Additionally, the 2016 Rio Paralympics did not have any Russian athletes as all 267 of them were banned across 18 sports.

The investigation was conducted after doping allegations were made by Grigory Rodchenkov, the former head of Russia’s national anti-doping laboratory. He claimed to have found evidence of a state-sponsored doping program during the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014.

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Rodchenkov had alleged that the Russian Secret Service was hand-in-glove with the Russian sports ministry to replace athletes’ urine samples between 2011 and 2015 to evade detection. The investigation was led by Canadian law professor and sports lawyer Dr. Richard McLaren (pictured), who said that sample bottles collected for testing were found to be tampered with, though it wasn’t visible to the untrained eye.

“The findings confirmed the Russian Olympic Committee’s part in one of the biggest doping scandals in history. While some clean individuals may still get a chance to compete, they will not be able to wear the Russian colors”- Business Insider

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