Russian rowers lose gold medals after positive drug test


ETON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 27:   Women's quadruple sculls team of Olga Samulenkova, Oxana Dorodnova, Larisa Merk and Irina Fedotova (RUS) celebrate their Gold medal during the finals of FISA World Rowing Championships 2006 on August 27, 2006 at Dorney Lake in Eton, England. (Photo by John Gichigi/Getty Images)The International Rowing Federation (FISA) today announced that rower Olga Samulenkova of Russia has tested positive for an exogenous source of metabolites of testosterone. She has been banned from competition in the sport of rowing for two years.

Samulenkova was a member of the Russian women’s quadruple scull crew that won a gold medal at the 2006 World Rowing Championships last August in Eton, Great Britain.

The ban from competition for Samulenkova is back-dated to 23 July 2006, the date on which the anti-doping test took place. This resulted in Samulenkova and her crew members being disqualified from any competitions in which they took part, after the date of the test, until her provisional suspension from competition on 26 September 2006.

A consequence of this ban is the disqualification of the entire Russian women’s quadruple scull crew from the 2006 World Rowing Championships. According to Articles 10 and 11.1 of the FISA Anti-Doping Rules the crew must now return their 2006 championship gold medals to FISA.

Samulenkova was tested in an out of competition test at a training camp on 23 July 2006. The result of the test was communicated to FISA by the Paris laboratory on 22 September 2006, three weeks after the World Rowing Championships. A “B” sample counter analysis confirmed the result of the “A” sample in November and the FISA Doping Hearing Panel concluded the process and delivered its decision this morning.

A consequence of this decision is that the women’s quadruple scull crew from Great Britain that placed second at the 2006 World Rowing Championships are now World Champions. The third placed crew from Australia receive the silver medal and the fourth placed crew from Germany move up to bronze.

FISA fully adopted the World Anti Doping Code in 2003 and has made it an integral part of the FISA Anti-Doping Rules.

For more information please contact Marion Gallimore, FISA Marketing and Communications Manager at or tel.: +41 21 617 83 73 or mobile: +41 79 706 72 55.

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