“The Olympic Games without the Russian national team, this is not the Olympic Games,” said Dmitry Shlyakhtin, president of the All-Russian Athletics Federation (ARAF).

This statement above made by the new president of ARAF is highly arrogant. The reality is, the Olympics Games without Russia is the Olympics Games without the worst cheaters in the games, as far as we know, to date. They typically finish ranked second to fourth in the overall medals standings.

During the Winter Games they have finished anywhere from first to 11th in medals won.

Since they have been suspended by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) for apparent systematic doping they have to follow certain procedures to be included in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. They are apparently working to clean up their federation, but are in danger of missing the deadlines imposed upon them to be re-instated.

Without Russia in the Olympic Games, the playing field will be more fare, although likely still very riddled with drug cheats from many nations,

Inside the Games

A deadline of June has been set by the All-Russia Athletics Federation (ARAF) for the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) to lift a ban on the country’s athletes for them to have an opportunity to compete at Rio 2016.

Dmitry Shlyakhtin,  newly-elected President of ARAF, admitted that if the suspension is not ended by then it will be too late for Russian athletes to achieve qualifying performances or be ready in time, even if it is subsequently lifted before the Olympic Games.

“We believe that our team will perform at the Olympics,” he told R-Sport.

“We hope so.

“But we understand that there is a point of no return.

“That is June.”

Russia were banned by the IAAF last November following allegations of state-supported doping in a report published by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Independent Commission.

A Taskforce, set-up by the IAAF to monitor changes being undertaken by Russia to address problems identified in the WADA report, completed its third visit to Moscow last week.

Earlier this month, Shlyakhtin travelled to Monte Carlo to hold talks with IAAF President Sebastian Coe.

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