Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Putin tests Sochi ski slopes (video, photos)

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Russian president Vladimir Putin hit the ski slopes one month before the world’s best skiers will compete at the same mountains during the Sochi Olympics.

Putin took a few runs at a complex in Krasnaya Polyana that will host biathlon and cross-country skiing, according to RIA Novosti. He was joined by prime minister Dmitry Medvedev, and the two later enjoyed tea together.

Putin, 61, was in the Black Sea resort to inspect all of the Olympic facilities in the mountain and coastal clusters and review preparations for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, according to the report.

He will pay particular attention to areas not yet complete, a list that includes Fisht Stadium, the site of the Opening Ceremony on Feb. 7.

Also Friday, the Olympic torch relay soared in a hot air balloon.

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Video: Boitano says U.S. delegation has to be careful in Sochi

WATCH LIVE: Big Air at Fenway — 8:30 p.m. ET

Fenway Big Air
Fenway Big Air
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Fenway Park will host some of the world’s best snowboarders in the one-of-a-kind Big Air at Fenway, live on NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra on Thursday night.

Snowboard big air riders will descend from a jump that’s four times higher than the Green Monster inside the hallowed Boston Red Sox home.

The finalists include U.S. Olympic slopestyle champion Sage Kotsenburg and women’s Winter X Games champion Spencer O’Brien of Canada. U.S. Olympic slopestyle champion Jamie Anderson was eliminated in earlier qualifying.

Snowboard big air, like slopestyle except riders get one jump per run, will debut at the Olympics at Pyeongchang 2018.

WATCH LIVE: Big Air at Fenway — 8:30 p.m. ET

Big Air at Fenway continues with ski big air Friday at 9 p.m. ET on NBCSN and Live Extra.

World Anti-Doping Agency investigates Kenya

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The World Anti-Doping Agency says Kenya is being investigated for breaching the global anti-doping code.

WADA says an independent compliance review committee will now evaluate Kenya and make a recommendation to WADA’s board on whether the country should be declared non-compliant with the code.

WADA says it asked Kenyan authorities to show commitment to setting up a national anti-doping agency, but “we have not yet received the details nor the assurances we need from Kenya and, therefore, this is now a matter for our independent compliance process.”

Although being declared non-compliant is unlikely to bring sanctions for athletes, it would be another embarrassment for the East African country, which is under severe scrutiny for its doping record.

WADA expects a decision on Kenya’s status in a few weeks.

MORE: Kenya banned athletes allege doping bribery