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Austrian Olympic Committee chief hopes for quick end to Turin probe

Austrian Olympic Committee chief hopes for quick end to Turin probe

A top Austrian Olympic official wants the IOC panel investigating the Turin doping scandal to work quickly so the focus can return to Salzburg's bid for the 2014 Winter Games.
Heinz Jungwirth, general secretary of the Austrian Olympic Committee, said on the eve of his appearance Tuesday before the panel in Lausanne, Switzerland, that he wants the controversy settled before the IOC picks the 2014 host city on July 4.
"This has to come to an end sometime," Jungwirth told the Austria Press Agency on Monday.
Salzburg is a finalist for 2014 along with Pyeongchang, South Korea, and Sochi, Russia. But Jungwirth suggests the Turin scandal has distracted the Austrians as they enter the final phase of the race.
"I don't want to set any priorities right now, but it's completely important to us," he said.
Last week, the IOC's executive board banned six Austrian cross-country and biathlon athletes from the Olympics for life _ the IOC's harshest punishment _ for involvement in blood-doping violations at the 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy.
The Austrians were found guilty of possessing doping substances and taking part in a conspiracy, based on materials seized by Italian police during a raid on the athletes' living quarters.
The athletes are cross-country skiers Martin Tauber, Juergen Pinter, Johannes Eder and Roland Diethart, and biathletes Wolfgang Perner and Wolfgang Rottmann.
Jungwirth said he wasn't sure what to expect from Tuesday's hearings in Lausanne.
"I have no idea exactly what the questions will be," he said. "But since the questioning of the athletes is over, they still want to know some general information surrounding the affair."
Austrian Ski Federation sports director Markus Gandler is scheduled to appear before the panel on Wednesday. Another Austrian official, team doctor Peter Baumgartl, opted instead to submit a written statement, but said he would be willing to testify in person if asked.


Updated : 2021-01-19 16:35 GMT+08:00