The system of anti-doping in Russia should become the best in the world. That is the main task of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency. This is what Yelena Isinbayeva, the two-time Olympic champion, thinks. Today, she headed the RUSADA Supervisory Council again. It is the RUSADA Supervisory Council that will reform the organization. The goal is to make it so independent, that it doesn't cause suspicion even among the most biased critics. The final stage of this process will become the rehabilitation of our country in WADA. Anton Lyadov reports.
Isinbayeva: «I won’t be lenient with anyone. — Including myself. — We don't doubt that». Now she wears high heels, a jacket, and a business suit, and has a report summary in her hands. Pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva has hardly been seen like this by anyone until today. A new outfit for a new goal. She says that protecting the rights of clean athletes is now her most important mission and the «new meaning of life».
"We want our anti-doping system to be the most powerful in the world and an example for the whole world community. We will monitor everyone and everything, and, of course, our main task is to fight doping in Russia and to identify all violations. It doesn't matter who it will be, a great athlete or an ordinary one" — said Isinbayeva.
In November 2015, the commission of the international organization WADA accused the Russian agency, RUSADA, of systematically covering up sportsmen who used doping. Since then, the tests of athletes have been taken exclusively by foreign doping officers. To restore the Russian anti-doping system, the composition of the new Supervisory Council was approved today. Independent specialists will monitor each step in the reform of RUSADA. Zhykov: «We will, in fact, form a new anti-doping system in Russia, that is, the new composition of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency, and the anti-doping laboratory, which is now part of the Moscow State University. All WADA recommendations on Supervisory Council formation were taken into account».
Impartiality and independence are the main requirements for the newly selected council members. One of them is the Hero of Russia, cosmonaut Sergey Ryazansky. It was he who took the Olympic torch to outer space for the first time in history, before the 2014 Sochi Olympics. «Very thorough and painstaking work is underway to re-create the agency. I believe that the clout that Elena has, will help to shape the new image of RUSADA».
The candidacy of Elena Isinbayeva was proposed on behalf of the Russian Olympic Committee by another champion, the saber fencer Sofya Velikaya. «I have just one attempt to show my work, and, of course, to clean our sport of this dirt, so that our generation of rising stars, both present and future, will never again face the problems that I, unfortunately, encountered in my sports career».
Isinbayeva like no one else knows what losing a dream because of the charges of doping means. The Rio de Janeiro Olympics was her goal which she was pursuing for several years. Despite the fact that the athlete was never caught doping, the International Association of Athletics Federations did not allow Isinbayeva and 67 other clean Russian athletes to compete.
Until the end of March, a new CEO of the Russian Anti-Doping Agency will be elected. It will be done on a competitive basis. Qualified specialists from all over the country can apply right now. New members of the Supervisory Council have already started to work. Meetings will be held regularly. This reform has already been called a big step towards creating a clean and a transparent Russian Anti-Doping Agency with an impeccable reputation.