Athletics: Russian star allowed to compete at 2016 Games

The Russian men's quadruple sculls team has been disqualified from the Rio de Janeiro Olympics for a doping violation and will be replaced at the games by New Zealand, world rowing's ruling body announced.

Stepanova and her husband Vitaly came forth and made public incriminating information as to the inside workings of Russian athletics and state complicit cover ups.

Russian Federation men's quadruple sculls crew have been banned from the Rio Olympics after one of their members failed a doping test in May, the world governing body FISA said on Friday.

Yulia Stepanova, an 800 meter runner becomes the first to pass the "exceptional eligiblity" guidelines set by the IAAF's doping review board.

Her participation in the August 5-21 Games is subject to formal approval by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). She worked with the Rome 2004 and Turin 2006 Olympic bids and also managed PR & media for Dr. Jacques Rogge during his campaign for the presidency.

European Athletics said it recognised Stepanova's "exceptional contribution to the protection and promotion of clean athletes" and cleared her to compete in Amsterdam next week.

The IAAF voted last month to maintain a global competition ban on the All-Russia Athletic Federation, and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided only athletes who are individually cleared to compete by their respective international federations could go to Rio. Russia's own anti-doping agency was nearly entirely shut down previous year after it faced cover-up claims.

The special eligibility measure is aimed largely at Russians who have been based overseas, and few athletes are likely to be considered, though US -based long jumper Daria Klishina, a two-time European indoor champion, is likely to be one. The deadline to apply is Monday, with a decision on all claims by July 18, three weeks before the athletics starts in Rio.

The IAAF has said more than 80 Russian athletes have applied.

US Moves Closer to Launching Havana Schedules
Obama to Visit Dallas Early Next Week