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Report: Team figure skating medal ceremony canceled after positive drug test

Report: Team figure skating medal ceremony canceled after positive drug test
A medal ceremony for the team figure skating event at the Beijing Winter Games, which was won by the Russian Olympic Committee, has been postponed due to an ongoing legal issue, the International Olympics Committee said Wednesday. Photo by Richard Ellis/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 9 (UPI) -- The medal ceremony for the team figure skating event at the Beijing Winter Games has been canceled due to allegations that a Russian skater tested positive for an outlawed substance that was not performance enhancing.

That word comes from sources who told that to The Guardian on Wednesday. According to the report, four Russian skaters failed to attend their scheduled training session Wednesday.

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Earlier, the International Olympics Committee announced the ceremony's postponement, but the nature of the legal issue was not made clear. A report on the website, Inside The Games, pointed to a legal situation involving the ROC.

The Russians took the gold medal in the team competition Monday, with the United States picking up silver and Japan the bronze. The award ceremony had been scheduled to be held at Beijing's outdoor medals plaza on Tuesday evening.

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If the reported positive drug test causes the ROC to be stripped of its gold medal, the Americans would become the winners, Japan would get silver and Canada would get bronze.

Russian athletes are competing for the second consecutive Olympics under a neutral banner, as the country remains banned from the Games due to a doping scandal, but athletes able to prove that they are "clean" are permitted to participate.

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A mini-ceremony was held on the ice at the skating venue, with the winning teams receiving stuffed dolls of Beijing's Olympic mascot, Bing Dwen Dwen.

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"A situation arose today at short notice that requires legal consultation with the [International Skating Union]," IOC spokesman Marc Adams said at a press conference Wednesday. "It's an emerging issue so I can't add very much more at the moment.

"You can bet your bottom dollar that we are doing absolutely everything we can so that the situation can be resolved as soon as possible," Adams said.

The IOC is expected to provide a further update later Wednesday.

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