Russian crew banned from Rio Olympics over doping

Russia’s men’s quadruple sculls crew were on Friday banned from the Rio Olympics after one of their members failed a doping test in May.

The sport’s world governing body FISA said in a statement that Sergej Fedorovtsev provided a urine sample at an out-of-competition test conducted by the Russian Anti-Doping Agency on May 17.

He tested positive for the prohibited substance trimetazidine.

The Russian crew had won the “last chance’’ qualifying regatta in Lucerne and advanced to the Rio Games, and they will now be replaced by third-placed New Zealand.

FISA said Fedorovtsev’s “A’’ and “B’’ samples tested positive for the substance, which is typically used for the treatment of the heart condition angina pectoris. and is a banned metabolic modulator.

The “B’’ sample was tested on Thursday.

The ban is the latest in an ongoing doping scandal within Olympic powerhouse Russia.

Their track and field athletes have been banned from competing at Rio after a World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) report last year identified systemic doping in the country.

Swimming’s world governing body FINA is also investigating reports of doping amongst Russian swimmers.

Also, the country’s weightlifters face a ban from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) following the re-testing of previous samples.

Already, Rowing New Zealand confirmed earlier this week that three crews, including the men’s quadruple sculls, had returned to training after missing out on qualifying for Rio.

This was in case there were any failed doping tests and quota spots reallocated by FISA.

The men’s four were also continuing to train after they finished third in Lucerne.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Russia’s men’s four qualified that boat for Rio at last year’s world championships.

“We have appreciated the emotional ups and downs as the athletes first missed qualification only to be asked to remain in competition mode,” RNZ chief executive Simon Peterson said on Friday.

“We are hugely disappointed that our athletes found themselves competing against cheats however very pleased … they have achieved their goal of winning a spot at the Olympic Games in Rio.’’