Russia bans snowboarder and skier for doping

The Russian alpine skiing federation has banned snowboarder Svetlana Vinogradova for two years for a doping offence, while alpine skier Andrei Bystrov has been banned for five months, the federation press service reported Tuesday.

The report said that doping samples, which the 24-year-old Vinogradova gave for testing on February 28, contained the banned medication carphedon.

The athlete, who finished runner-up in the halfpipe discipline at February's Russian Cup, failed to prove her innocence and the two-year sanction effectively dashes her hopes of competing at the Sochi Olympics in 2014.

Meanwhile, Bystrov's samples, which he gave on March 21 in Sochi during Russia's national alpine skiing championships, showed the presence of marijuana.

Bystrov said he had smoked from a hookah in the company of strangers just before the competition started and that this was the only way marijuana could have entered his system.