CAS uphold Russian track and field Olympic ban

By iSportconnect | July 21, 2016

The Court of Arbitration for Sport has upheld the IAAF’s blanket ban on Russian athletes competing at the Olympic Games.

Aside from a handful of exception cases, it means there will be no Russian athletes competing in athletics in Rio.

The decision is also expected to have a wider impact – the IOC had been waiting for CAS’ ruling before deciding whether to ban the entire Russian Olympic delegation in the wake the McLaren report.

However, in its ruling, CAS said it could not make judgements on whether some Russians athletes should be allowed to enter under a neutral flag – as it was beyond its remit. They could only rule bases on IAAF regulations.

Had CAS overturned the ban, the IOC would feel that they could not exclude Russia from the Olympics – as CAS would have already ruled on a case with the same theme: whether individual athletes should be punished for the failings of their country.

The McLaren report outlined systematic, state-sponsored doping by the Russians from 2012 – 2015.

The IOC had said it was ‘exploring the legal possibility’ of banning the entire Russian delegation from Rio, and now CAS have ruled against the Russians, many Western NOCs will be putting pressure on the IOC to do the same.