Russian Anti-Doping Agency announces bans for Sergey Kirdyapkin, Valery Borchin and Olga Kaniskina after biological passport irregularities

The Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) has announced the bans handed to three Olympic gold medallist race walkers following irregularities in their biological passports.

Sergey Kirdyapkin, who won Olympic 50km race walk gold in London in 2012, and his compatriots Valeriy Borchin and Olga Kaniskina, who won the men’s and women’s 20km race walk titles respectively at the Beijing Games in 2008, have each received suspensions.

Kirdyapkin was banned for three years and two months from October 15, 2012, with results from July 20, 2009 to September 20, 2009; June 29, 2010 to August 29, 2010, and December 17, 2011 to June 11, 2012, to be annulled. Given those date ranges, this does not affect his London 2012 gold but could mean a loss of his 2009 world 50km title.

Borchin was handed an eight-year ban from October 15, 2012, for a second doping offence. RUSADA also announced a loss of results for him from July 14, 2009 to September 15, 2009; June 16, 2011 to September 27, 2011 and April 11, 2012 to September 3, 2012, with those date ranges including when he won two world titles.

Like Kirdyapkin, Kaniskina was also banned for three years and two months from October 15, 2012, with the cancellation of results from July 15, 2009, to September 16, 2009, and July 30, 2011 to November 8, 2011, announced by RUSADA, those date ranges also including when two world titles were claimed.

Sergey Bakulin, the 2011 world 50km race walk champion, and 2011 20km race walk silver medallist Vladimir Kanaykin were also among those handed bans. RUSADA announced a three years and two month ban from October 15, 2012, for Bakulin, while Kanaykin has received a life ban.

With these bans, Kirdyapkin, Kaniskina and Bakulin would all be free to compete at the Rio 2016 Olympics. However, as with all cases, the IAAF will review the suspensions that have been handed out.

This announcement follows the news that the IAAF is investigating allegations that another Russian race walker, London 2012 Olympic gold champion Elena Lashmanova, competed while banned. Bakulin is also alleged to have been among the athletes to have competed at that Russian meeting in December.