The former head of the scandal-hit Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) has claimed that 40 per cent of drug test violations in the country have come in youth sports.
Ramil Khabriev made the shocking claim as Russia bids to clean up its act following a stream of damaging allegations, particularly those of state sponsored doping which were revealed by the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) Independent Commission report.
If he is correct, the country seemingly faces a tougher job on its hands than was initially feared with a whole new generation of athletes perhaps used to a doping culture.
“The problem of doping in Russia, of course, is acute and this cannot be denied,” Khabriev told R-Sport.
“The results of our activity show that we have the most violations in anti-doping rules in comparison with other countries.
“This, of course, shows there’s a serious problem.
“It’s alarming that around 40 per cent of these violations are from youth sports, even on that level the coaches have turned to using doping in order to gain some sort of local results.”