IAAF appeals doping ban duration for Russian athletes before CAS

IAAF suspends seven Russian athletes for doping Monte Carlo - The ruling athletics body IAAF said Thursday it has appealed the duration of doping bans on seven Russian athletes at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

The IAAF said it objects to the Russian athletics federation ruling to ban the athletes for two years from the time the samples were taken, April and May 2007. This would make them eligible to compete again at the 2009 world championships in Berlin.

In addition, the athletes were not suspended until July 2008 ahead of the Beijing Olympics, which would reduce the effective competition ban to less than a year.

The IAAF has asked the CAS to impose a two-year ban from the suspension time onwards, or even a longer ban due to the special circumstances.

"It is unacceptable to the IAAF that these athletes, who have committed serious and deliberate breaches of our anti-doping rules would receive an effective ban of approximately 9-10 months and see them eligible to compete again in the summer of 2009," said IAAF boss Lamine Diack.

"What is more, I consider the circumstances surrounding these cases warrants the IAAF to seek an extended ban over and above the minimum two year period."

The athletes, which include two-time 1,500 metres world champion Tatyana Tomashova, were caught for urine manipulations through DNA tests.

The IAAF is not only acting tough in the seven Russian, it also plans to re-examine drug samples taken ahead of the Beijing Olympics for the third generation of the blood booster EPO, known as CERA.

Several cyclists tested positive for CERA in retests of Tour de France samples, and the International Olympic Committee has announced it will also retest all its 5,000 Olympic samples for CERA.

IAAF anti-doping department head Gabriel Dolle also said that around 50 blood samples could be re-examined for insulin.

The IAAF said it would conduct more and more target tests in the future. Some 2,000 tests were conducted in 2008 and 58 positive cases reported. (dpa)