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PYEONCHANG, South Korea — United States biathlete Lowell Bailey finished his last Olympic race Friday night, but he didn’t go quietly, declaring that Russia “Is still willing to push the limits and break the rules and cheat.”
Bailey’s comments came in the wake of the news that Russian bobsledder Nadezha Sergeeva, who finished 12th in the two-woman bobsled, tested positive for trimetazidine, a banned substance. Russian curler Alexander Krushelnitzky had previously been stripped of a bronze medal after failing a drug test.
“It’s clear that there’s plenty of evidence that Russia hijacked the Olympics, the Sochi Olympics that is,” said Bailey, a four-time Olympian. “It’s clear that the methods they used were systemic throughout the Russian team, across a broad array of sports, and they’ve really paid very, very little in the way of punishment for that.
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“I honestly think Russia hasn’t gotten the message. It’s clear that they haven’t gotten the message because they’re still, after all that’s happened with the IOC, they’re clearly still willing to push the limits and break the rules and cheat. That’s not part of the Olympics and that’s not part of international sport. That’s not part of the WADA code which every athlete signs, which every international federation is supposed to abide by, and until that changes, we’re going to be seeing the same thing.
“If we don’t have meaningful deterrence that makes sure that national Olympic committees are dissuaded from cheating, from doping, if we don’t install those deterrents, we’re going to be seeing this in the next Olympics and the next Olympics because there’s just not enough of a reason for Russia to not cheat, so they’re going to continue to cheat until something comes down that’s strong enough punishment that’s, like, ‘OK, enough is enough.’”