The Latest on Russian doping scandal (all times local):
Alexander Zubkov says he is stepping down as president of the Russian bobsled federation after being banned for two years in a doping case.
Zubkov carried the Russian flag at the opening ceremony of the 2014 Sochi Olympics and won two bobsled gold medals which were later stripped for doping. He denies taking any banned substances.
Zubkov tells The Associated Press he is “stepping down for the duration of (his) disqualification” from the International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, which runs through December 2020. He adds he could return to the post when the ban ends.
Zubkov says Elena Anikina, a longtime sports official who worked on Russia’s bid to host the Sochi Olympics, will serve as acting president.
Vladimir Putin’s spokesman says Russia is “optimistic” ahead of a World Anti-Doping Agency ruling Tuesday on whether the country’s authorities met demands to turn over lab data.
The WADA executive committee reinstated Russia’s anti-doping agency in September on condition the country turned over data from a Moscow laboratory. That could help WADA pursue doping cases against many top Russian athletes for past offenses.
WADA representatives left Moscow with the data last week but only after Russia missed a Dec. 31 deadline.
Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, says “our sports authorities have clearly made the maximum effort to arrange the work of the WADA representatives in Moscow, to arrange all the necessary procedures and contacts” and “so in Moscow everyone is optimistic.”