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  • New Leader for Russian Bobsleigh Federation


    (ATR) Elena Anikina appointed interim president of the Russian Bobsleigh Federation (RBF), as Alexander Zubkov steps down until the end of his two-year doping suspension.
    Elena Anikina (left) and Alexander Zubkov (center) at July 2018 RBF meeting (Facebook)

    Anikina, a member of the RBF Presidium, tells Around the Rings that she has been asked by the Presidium to serve until December 18, 2020, the date Zubkov completes his sanction.

    “I hope that today’s decision of our Presidium will be taken positively and will be supported by all,” Anikina said to ATR.

    “My devotion to sport and Olympic movement is enormous and my task is to protect interests of Olympism, clean sport and clean athletes!”

    The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation (IBSF) banned Zubkov last week for being part of the Russian scheme in Sochi that swapped steroid-tainted urine samples with clean ones. The sanction prevents Zubkov from taking part in the sport during that time, forcing him to give up his post as head of the RBF. He was re-elected to a four-year term in 2018.

    A four-time Olympian, Zubkov carried the Russian flag at the opening ceremony for the 2014 Winter Games and at age 39, became one of the oldest bobsleigh drivers to win gold medals at an Olympics. The IOC in 2017 stripped him of the gold medals he won in the two- and four-man bobsleigh in Sochi, citing doping offenses.

    Zubkov has said he may appeal the IBSF ban.

    “I don’t know exactly about his future decisions,” Anikina says, “but I will be happy if all his plans are realized successfully and want Alexander to be back.”

    Written by Gerard Farek

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