Marek's Vancouver results erased

Updated: April 29, 2010, 12:09 PM ET
Associated Press

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- The IOC on Thursday disqualified a Polish cross-country skier who tested positive for a blood-boosting drug at the Vancouver Olympics.

The International Olympic Committee stripped Kornelia Marek of all her results from Vancouver, although she did not win any medals. Marek tested positive for EPO after helping Poland finish sixth in the 20K relay on Feb. 25.

She admitted taking injections but said she believed the substances were allowed.

Marek also was a member of the Polish team that finished ninth in the team sprint. She placed 11th in the 30K mass start, 39th in the 10K freestyle and 35th in the 15K pursuit.

All the results were voided, including the relay and team events.

Polish Olympic Committee spokesman Henryk Urbas said Marek was notified of the IOC decision.

"It does not deny us the joy over winning six medals [in Vancouver], but it is an unpleasant and unwanted tarnish," he said. "We would have preferred nothing like this ever happened."

The IOC told the international ski federation FIS to consider any further sanctions. The use of EPO normally results in a two-year ban.

Under IOC rules, Marek would be banned from competing in the next Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, in 2014. Poland's ski federation also has suspended her for two years.

She becomes the first athlete disqualified by the IOC for doping in Vancouver.

The Olympics, which ended Feb. 28, had produced only two minor violations -- both involving hockey players who tested positive for light stimulants and were let off with reprimands.

The IOC stores doping samples for eight years so they can be analyzed retroactively once new testing methods become available. If future testing shows an athlete cheated, the IOC can impose sanctions and strip any medals.


Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press

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