Doping Scandal in Austria: Salzburg’s 2014 Bid Compromised / News / News agency Inforos
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Doping Scandal in Austria: Salzburg’s 2014 Bid Compromised

29.05.2007 15:41

Doping Scandal in Austria: Salzburg’s 2014 Bid Compromised
The chief of Austria's ski federation Peter Schroecksnadel resigned as vice president of the Austrian Olympic Committee (AOC) , saying he hopes his departure will help Salzburg's bid for the 2014 Winter Games.

Meanwhile Schroecksnadel said he had no intention of stepping down as head of the ski federation.

His resignation is the latest fallout from the Austrian blood doping scandal. Last week the International Olympic Committee (IOC) fined the Austria Olympic Committee $1 million over their athletes’ doping affair at Turin Winter Games last year. The Austrian Olympic Committee was suspended "from receiving or applying for any grants or subsidies" from the IOC worth $1 million, the IOC said in a statement. The IOC also gave the Austrian Olympic Committee time until June 2008 to report on the results of its ongoing investigation into a doping scandal at Turin Games.

Italian police and doping testers raided the Austrian biathlon and cross-country skiing team headquarters in Turin after the appearance of a banned coach, Walter Mayer. Police found blood bags and equipment used for blood doping. While none of the athletes tested positive, the IOC last month banned six of them from competing in any future Olympics over violations of its anti-doping rules.

After IOC decision Austrian Olympic Committee president Leo Wallner accused the Austrian Ski Federation of a "serious failure". He said the scandal potentially could have knocked Austrian athletes out of at least the 2008 Summer Games and the 2010 Winter Olympics.

The federation "compromised the Olympic spirit", he said, and the AOC will take disciplinary measures against the ski federation for putting "an entire generation of athletes" at risk. Wallner said one measure could be to require all federation athletes and officials to swear to uphold the values and ethics of the Olympic movement.

He added officials who were in charge of Austria’s cross country ski and biathlon teams could also be banned for life from the Olympics and the ski federation could wind up having to pay the fine imposed Thursday.

Salzburg (Austria) is competing for the Games against PyeongChang Korea and Sochi Russia. IOC will announce the host city for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games on July 4 in Guatemala.

Analysts say that the Austrian blood doping scandal may jeopardize Salzburg’s chances to host the 2014 Winter Games. As Austrian athletes face a lifetime ban, so the question is, whether a country barred from the Olympic needs the Games and whether Olympic officials would like to give the Games to a country that would not take part.
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