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Richard McLaren: 'The IOC have to react quickly'

April 27, 2017

The author of a report investigating allegations of state-sponsored Russian doping says the IOC 'can't just drag their feet' in reacting to his conclusions. McLaren was speaking at a discussion in German parliament.

Doping Sportpolitik Richard McLaren
Image: picture alliance/dpa/M. Gambarini

DW: You just said that you are a bit frustrated with the situation. Could you explain why?

Richard McLaren: Well, I think it is he subjects matter of today's discussion, why are the action, reaction and steps so slow? I think you heard some of the explanations, if you were in the hearing room. I did my report very quickly and the follow up has been slow. That's the frustration. 

And we don't have enough time because the next Olympic games are within one year. So what are your expectations towards the institutions to react now?

I think they have to react quickly, because there is an increasing pressure on them to respond. So they can't just drag their feet. I am in the process of trying to assist the IOC in speeding up its work and hopefully that will occur.

What do you think about the reactions from Russia to your revelations?

Well, I think the Russians haven't really challenged the core of what I had to say, but they have dealt with all the officials that were named in the report. None of them occupy the positions in which they were when I was examining the system. I understand, although I haven't ahd this confirmed directly, that most of them have been terminated from their positions. So I think the Russians have taken the report seriously and have taken active steps. I'd like to see what their new anti doping code is, which is yet to be revealed, and some of the other steps they have been talking about, but have yet to be produced.

What do you think about the fact that your report was doubted by many people from the sports world?

I wouldn't agree with you that it was doubted by many people, but it certainly was challenged. That's a legitimate role for anybody to feel free to do. I think that the credibility of the report and its contents stand today unchallenged and completely reliable.

Is there one thing you wish on the restructuring in the institution of sports after your report?

I don't think my report has much to do with the restructuring of the institutions. That's a much more complicated problem then the investigation that I conducted and I didn't express any views about that.

Question from SID: In your opinion, who is responsible for the lack of consequences?

McLaren: I don't think it's a single individual or a single organization. It's international federations that receive information and don't act on it. It's the IOC in being slow, but there have been some reasons why they have been slow, its when its not as supportive of the report, as they could have been. It's a combination of a number of things.

SID: What are the next steps necessary for you to not be frustrated anymore?

Fast action! 57 days to do the first report, equally quick action on the part of the sports bodies.

You just said that you'd meet with Thomas Bach, the IOC president. What are you expectations when you meet him? 

I think, I'll answer that question when I've met him. I am encouraged by the correspondence we had and I think it will be a positive meeting. I am looking forward to having it. It's coming up shortly.


Richard McLaren is a lawyer who specializes in sports. In 2015 he was a member of an independent WADA commission set up to investiage allegations of state-sponsored doping in Russian sports. The Canadian has preciously investigated drug use in Major League Baseball