Olive Loughnane looks certain to be crowned 2009 world champion following the disqualification of a Russian athlete - but may have to wait some time to receive her medal.
As expected, the IAAF confirmed today that a number of major international titles would be redistributed in light of the disqualification of several Russian athletes for doping offences.
However, Loughnane will have to wait for her gold medal, as the IAAF is awaiting a "full reasoned decision" from ARAF (Russian Federation). Yesterday Russian authorities announced bans that in some cases went up to - but not including - the Olympic Games in London in 2012.
Olga Kaniskina won gold in the women's 20km walk in Berlin in August 2009, with Loughnane finishing second. However Kaniskina will now have all her results between 15 July 2009 and 16 September 2009 cancelled, which would mean a gold medal for Loughnane.
The statement today confirmed that the medals would be redistributed and said that 23 Russian athletes had now been sanctioned under the Biological Passport programme - from a total of 37 athletes worldwide. The biological passport programme was launched in 2009
“The number of Russian doping cases in athletics generally, and in race walking specifically, is a major concern for the IAAF and we are fully investigating recent doping allegations in Russian athletics, with WADA’s support.”
Of the 17 gold medals won by Russian walkers at the Olympics and World Championships in the last decade, 16 were won by athletes who have been banned for doping at some stage of their careers or who are currently under investigation.