Rumors concerning a doping investigation of the Russian biathlon program were denied on Wednesday by International Biathlon Union (IBU) President Anders Besseberg.
Speaking on Tuesday to Norwegian broadcaster NRK, Jim Carrabre, vice president of medical issues at IBU, cast doubt on the integrity of Russian testing at the Sochi Olympics. He said we will be launching an investigative probe into the sport.
Besseberg and Carrabre had not communicated on this issue. Citing testing conducted last summer, Besseberg criticized the grounds of Carrabre's accusations.
"I am skeptical about new revelations," Besseberg said to the Associated Press. "I must say that I'll be very surprised if one laboratory has managed to cheat, even if they had observers on a high-level presence of WADA. It is anonymous samples and then I'm surprised if they've had such a clever system."
WADA, or the World Anti-Doping Agency, released a report on doping at the 2014 Sochi Olympics. It found that Russia had breached its codes on multiple instances, such as covering up doping cases, allowing banned athletes to compete and warning athletes in advance about "secret" tests.
"The conclusion from the WADA report is that all winter federations who were at the Sochi Olympics should be concerned," Carrabre told NRK, according to Reuters. "I am concerned, that is why I will launch an investigation."
Russia's biathlon chief Alexander Kravtsov, meanwhile, has maintained that Russia strictly controls doping within its program. "I can say that now, more than ever, Russian athletes are checked for doping and there are no problems. Our biathlon is clean," said Kravtsov, according to Reuters.
Fears of doping have manifested in biathlon, and not other sports, perhaps because three of Russia's biathlon skiers are currently banned from the sport. Ekaterina Iourieva, the most heinous offender, will not ski professionally for another 12 years. The Russian Biathlon Union was fined 100,000 Euros in penalty.