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Adam Rippon blames ‘adults’ after 15-year-old Russian skater’s positive drug test

The former Olympic figure skater criticized the Russian Olympic Committee for putting teen Kamila Valieva "in this awful situation."

Former Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon called out the Russian Olympic Committee after teen figure skater Kamila Valieva tested positive for a banned drug ahead of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.

"This entire situation is heartbreaking," Rippon tweeted on Friday. "This young girl is just 15. She’s a minor. The adults around her have completely failed her. They’ve put her in this awful situation and should be punished."

The International Testing Agency recently confirmed that the 15-year-old Russian skater tested positive for the banned substance trimetazidine at the Russian national championships in St. Petersburg in December 2021.

Rippon and other prominent names in figure skating are calling out the adults responsible for Valieva’s use of the banned heart drug. The ROC put her performance "ahead of her health and well-being," Rippon said.

“The ROC has miserably failed its athletes and embarrassed themselves on the world stage YET AGAIN. My heart breaks for the Russian athletes competing in Beijing who will have everything they do at this Olympics questioned,” Rippon said.

Katarina Witt, a German former Olympic figure skater, posted on Facebook in defense of Valieva. Both she and Rippon emphasized that the 15-year-old should not be held responsible for the failed test.

“What they knowingly did to her, if true, cannot be surpassed in inhumanity and makes my athlete’s heart cry infinitely,” Witt wrote. 

On Monday, Valieva became the first woman in history to land a quadruple jump at the Olympics — twice.

"The world wants to celebrate the success of those who push the sport to new levels. We can’t do that when some repeatedly refuse to play fair," Rippon said.

Valieva’s right to compete in the women’s events at the Beijing Olympics, which begin Tuesday, will be decided in an urgent hearing at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.