MOSCOW (AP) – Anton Shipulin, a world biathlon champion at the heart of Russia’s doping scandal, has announced his retirement.
Shipulin told a news conference Tuesday in Moscow that he decided to retire after he was barred from the Winter Olympics earlier this year. He is one of scores of Russian athletes banned from competing for being part of Russia’s state-sponsored doping program at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi. Shipulin won a gold medal in Sochi’s biathlon relay race.
Shipulin, like many other Russian athletes, has vehemently denied the accusations.
He says it’s “better to leave now than win spots far from the pedestal” and blamed “the political climate” for his poor results.
Austrian police have said recently they’re investigating 10 members of Russia’s biathlon team for doping and fraud offenses.