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Zuzanna Ziomecka
Zuzanna Ziomecka EDITOR IN CHIEF
Lea Berriault-Jauvin
Lea Berriault Managing Editor
Smigun-Vahi and Neumannova. Wikicommons

Estonian cross-country skier Kristina Šmigun-Vähi is free of doping suspicions 

Marta Tuul recommended by Marta Tuul Eesti Ekspress, Estonia

In 2014 -- nearly a decade later after Šmigun-Vähi won the gold in Torino  -- Russian media began to insinuate that she had used illicit drugs to get her place on the podium.

Estonia Women to watch

Why this story matters:

scandal, xx news

Back in 2006, nearly every single Estonian alive tuned in to watch cross-country skiing at the Torino winter olympics, and countless families erupted into joyous cheer when Estonian skier Kristina Šmigun-Vähi won the gold medal.

However, in 2014 -- nearly a decade later -- Russian media began to insinuate that Šmigun-Vähi had used illicit drugs to win her place on the podium.

Shortly after, the International Olympic Committee declared having found forbidden molecules in the sample provided by Šmigun-Vähi doping test. They announced the need for an enquiry, whose results were announced this week.

After three years of uncertainty, Šmigun-Vähi has finally been cleared of all suspicions.

"My day is filled with sunshine today." wrote Šmigun-Vähi in response. "I don't have anything to add -- everything has been clearly stated."

The accusations had cast a shadow on Estonian skiing. Now Estonia rejoices, ready to cheer its athletes in PyeongChang, where Russia will be banned over state-sponsored doping.

Details from the story:

  • In 2006, Estonian skier Kristina Šmigun-Vähi won a gold medal at the Torino Olymic Winter Games.
  • In 2014, Russian media insinuated that she had used drugs to win.
  • Kristina Šmigun-Vähi wrote publicly that she is willing to fight those accusations. She insisted that all her samples had been clean.
  • In Torino, 1219 athletes gave doping samples. Of these, 489 were re-tested to look into possible foul play.
  • In 2017, the International Olympic Committee announced that all the re-tested samples were clean.

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