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Biathlon World Cup, Sebastian samuelsson

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Biathlon World Cup, Sebastian samuelsson

– This is a pretty clear indication that there is more behind it, says NRK commentator Jan Petter Saltvedt to Nettavisen.

During the final race in the WC in Nové Město, Rastorgujevs went for a surprising silver. It was the Latvian’s first World Cup medal ever.

As is well known, the controversial biathlete was banned from all competitions for 18 months after breaking the anti-doping rules due to three breaches of the obligation to report.

After the race, Sweden’s Sebastian Samuelsson stated that he did not want to congratulate the Latvian silver medalist. The Swede has long had a prominent voice in the biathlon world, especially in the fight against doping.

Therefore, Samuelsson’s refusal to congratulate Saltvedt does not surprise him. He thinks Samuelsson suspects that Rastorgujevs has something to hide.

– The way I read it, there is a fairly clear indication that there is a reason why he got away from the inspectors. I’m not sure if Samuelsson would have marked in that way against someone he thought was an idiot who failed to do some of the most basic things you have to remember as a top athlete, says the NRK commentator.

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– It was now or never

As Rastorgujevs’ case became relevant after Sunday’s race, Saltvedt believes that Samuelsson used the opportunity to highlight his point of view.

– Now Rastorgujevs is 35 years old, and he (Samuelsson) probably didn’t feel that he had so many other opportunities left to mark it, especially when they win a medal every 19 years. So it was now or never for exactly that case here, says Saltvedt.

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Ole Einar Bjørndalen has also learned that Samuelsson refused to congratulate Rastorgujevs. The biathlon legend says that everyone must be allowed to react in their own way.

– There is a reason for serving a sentence. He (Rastorgujevs) has done something you shouldn’t do, but there is a big difference between the obligation to report versus being tested for doping, says Bjørndalen to Nettavisen.

Furthermore, Bjørndalen says that it is impossible to know whether he has deliberately avoided reporting or not.

– If you know what he has done, I understand his (Samuelsson’s) reaction, but I personally would not have had any problems sharing the podium with him because I don’t know more than that I forgot to report.

Exactly what is the reason why Rastorgujevs broke the duty to report three times, the protagonist will not say anything about at this time. He instead came up with a cryptic answer.

– You will find out one day, Rastorgujevs told The daily newspaper after the medal race.

The Latvian says the following about Samuelsson not wanting to congratulate him.

– That is Sebastian Samuelsson’s problem. Not mine. After the ban, nothing affects me anymore. It changed my thinking. If the athletes had known exactly what was happening, it would have been a different story.

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– Have a suspicion

Saltvedt believes that Samuelsson’s reaction indicates that the runners take violations of the obligation to report very seriously.

– Viewed in isolation, it is an acknowledgment that among the athletes, the violations of the obligation to report are clearly considered to be full-fledged violations of the doping regulations. As I said, I have a suspicion that there are some other underlying suspicions that reinforce this, but that is just speculation, he says.

– But yes, he has not been caught for using illegal substances. But it is precisely to capture the shadow periods that the reporting obligation system has been introduced. So one could well say that there are many problematic things with the way it is carried out, but here you have a judgment and a ban, and Samuelsson obviously reads that as an expression of something more, Saltvedt continues.

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Bjørndalen says that he himself has forgotten to register once during his biathlon career. After this, he was extra aware of when the next deadline for reporting was. Precisely because of the fear athletes have of exclusion.

– You have to be very lazy to get three penalties, he says, referring to Rastorgujevs.

Bjørndalen, who has been involved in the sport for a number of years, says that he would like to have stricter penalties when it comes to doping and doping rules.

– I, and everyone I know, want there to be stricter penalties, he says clearly.

The biathlon circus is now taking a short break after the WC, before they are back again for the World Cup race in Holmenkollen on 29 February.

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