Cross-Country Skiing

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Russian skiers stay suspended awaiting Olympic doping cases

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LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — Six Russian cross-country skiers will stay suspended until an IOC panel judges if they were part of a state-backed doping conspiracy at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport says the Olympic commission – chaired by International Olympic Committee member Denis Oswald – should deliver rulings “during the summer period.”

The court says the skiers will stay provisionally suspended until at least Oct. 31. They include Alexander Legkov, the Olympic 50km freestyle champion, and Maxim Vylegzhanin, a three-time silver medalist at Sochi.

The skiers appealed against interim bans imposed by the International Ski Federation in December after they were implicated by World Anti-Doping Agency investigator Richard McLaren.

CAS hearings this month did not examine detailed doping allegations against Legkov, Vylegzhanin, Alexey Petukhov, Evgenia Shapovalova, Evgeniy Belov and Julia Ivanova.

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Dog gets loose, joins World Cup cross-country skiing race (video)

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A loose dog ran onto the course at a World Cup cross-country skiing race Sunday, joining the three leaders in Quebec City.

The dog ran around the skiers for about 10 seconds before letting them go by.

“It happens in cycling races, but I’ve never seen it in skiing,” Canadian second-place finisher Alex Harvey said, according to the Canadian Press. “It just makes the story even better because luckily no one crashed or got hurt.”

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MORE: U.S. cross-country skiers mark most successful world champs

Longer ban for Norway skiing star sought by International Ski Federation

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OBERHOFEN, Switzerland (AP) — The International Ski Federation (FIS) wants to impose a longer ban on Norwegian cross-country ski star Therese Johaug in a doping case involving a steroid.

Johaug’s 13-month ban, which lets the Olympic champion return for the 2018 Olympics, is “on the low end of the range of reasonable sanctions,” FIS said Tuesday

FIS is appealing at the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the ruling by a Norwegian Olympic tribunal. The case is likely to take several months.

The 28-year-old Johaug tested positive for clostebol. She said it was in a lotion approved by a team doctor to treat sunburned lips during high-altitude training last August in Italy.

The Norwegian judging panel decided that Johaug, a two-time overall World Cup champion and seven-time world championships gold medalist, was not at significant fault for her positive test.

FIS cited Johaug’s failure “to read the doping warning label printed in red on the package.”

The governing body also suggested the skier was further at fault because the “medication was unknown to her and was purchased in a foreign country.”

Johaug’s ban blocked her from defending her World Cup title, but she will be allowed to compete again in mid-November, almost three months before the Pyeongchang Olympics open in South Korea.

Johaug won gold in the 4×5-kilometer relay at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, and earned individual silver and bronze medals in distance events at the 2014 Sochi Games.

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MORE: U.S. cross-country skiers mark most successful world champs