15-Year-Old Olympic Skater Tests Positive for Performance Enhancement Drug

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Valieva currently participating in the 2022 Olympics in Beijing. Picture courtesy of Russia Beyond.

Kamila Valieva is a 15-year-old Russian figure skater who is participating in the 2022 Beijing Olympics. While a fan favorite within her country, she tested positive for consuming a heart medication called Trimetazidine that can also be used to enhance one’s performance and abilities.

Her goal is to be the third woman to win the gold medal for figure skating, in hopes of representing Russia. However, with her recent drug test, it is possible that Russia will be disqualified or have less of a chance of winning this season or in future seasons.

Despite being caught with a banned drug, Valvieva has been not disqualified from the games due to her age. It is stated that because she is a minor, she isn’t entirely liable for her decision.

Kamila Valieva figure skating. Picture courtesy of People Magazine.

Figure Skating In Russia

In the past, many athletes have been banned from participating in the Olympics due to illegal performance enhancement drugs, some of which were from the same country and participated in the same sport as Valieva. However, unlike Valieva, they were disqualified due to being considered an adult within their country.

Valieva Returns to Ice

Some suggest this is not a fair outcome and that Valieva shouldn’t face the same punishment, while others believe that everyone should face the same punishment if they are participating in the Olympics, regardless of age.

2010 Winners of the Golden Medal in Figure Skating, Scott Moir (Left) and Tessa Virtue. Picture from Wikipedia.

The Olympics are still ongoing in Beijing, and because this occurred earlier within this Olympic season, Valieva has not been disqualified. It is still possible that Russia can fulfill its goal this season.

2022 Olympic Season COVID-19 Restrictions/Concerns

Every participant is required to be fully vaccinated and take COVID-19 tests daily. Beijing especially has strict COVID-19 restrictions for participants, if tested positive, athletes have to quarantine for 14 days.