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Russian Doping Whistle-Blower Says Doubts Country’s Attitude Has Changed


Russian runner Yulia Stepanova

Russian runner Yulia Stepanova

Russian whistle-blower Yulia Stepanova says she doubts her country's attitude toward sports doping has changed substantially since she and her husband exposed the problem with performance-enhancing drugs three years ago.

"It will be hard to change because you need to change the mentality," Stepanova said on January 28 through a translator. "A lot of coaches in Russia were athletes themselves, and they were coached in the U.S.S.R. system.

"It's hard for them to believe that there's another way to do it."

Stepanova had just finished last in the 800-meter run at the Boston Indoor Grand Prix in her first international indoor competition in two years.

She competed as a neutral athlete, as she did at last year’s European Championships.

Revelations by Stepanova and husband Vitaly to antidoping officials in 2014 helped exposer doping problems in Russia that led to the country's track teams being banned from international competition, including the Rio Olympics.

Based on reporting AP and Reuters
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