Russia has been banned from the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea by the International Olympic Committee over allegations of systemic doping leading up to, and during, the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
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Swimmer Dara Torres, who competed in five Olympics beginning with the 1984 Games in Los Angeles, weighed in on the ban, telling the FOX Business Network’s Stuart Varney, “This is doping fraud and I’m so glad they’re finally doing something about this.”
According to Torres, athletes have suspected doping was going on for decades.
“I swam against the East Germans back in the 80’s and we all kind of thought that something was going on because they looked a little different than most swimmers in the world,” Torres recounted.
“I actually remember walking into a locker room and hearing men’s voices, I’m like ‘oh my gosh, I’m in the wrong locker room’ and I go out and I see that it says ‘women,’ I’m like wait I’m in the right locker room. And I go in and it’s the East Germans sitting there talking with really, really deep voices. So, we knew something was going on but we couldn’t really say anything because we didn’t have proof.”
Torres says she is happy this is happening for the clean athletes out there.
“You have to think about these athletes who work their whole entire life to get onto that medal stand, hear that national anthem play and get those medals put around their neck and they’re robbed of that, and that’s just very, very sad to see.”
With the North Korea nuclear threat on everyone’s minds, Nikki Haley, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., addressed concerns about U.S. athletes attending the 2018 Winter Olympics on Fox News Wednesday.
“We will make sure that we’re taking every precaution possible to make sure that they’re [U.S. athletes] safe,” Haley said.
However, Torres hopes the U.S. does not boycott next year’s Olympics, but adds that there were safety concerns even when she competed in the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea.
“Back then they were talking about safety issues and in fact, when we left the village, they would have a guard with a huge gun walk with us everywhere just because they were so concerned about safety,” she says.