Russian speed skater celebrates victory over Team USA by throwing 'double bird'

Russian speed skater celebrates victory over Team USA by throwing ‘double bird’

The Russian skater apologized for showing two middle fingers to the crowd after defeating the United States in the semi-finals of the men’s team pursuit in Beijing.

Daniil Aldoshkin, along with his Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) teammates Sergey Trofimov and Ruslan Zakharov, won a thrilling semi-final race against world record holders from the United States.

But as he crossed the finish line, the 20-year-old raised both hands in celebration and tossed the “double bird” to the audience.

He has since claimed that the gesture was meant to show that he had won his first Olympic medal, while the president of the Russian Skating Union insisted there was no subtext behind the gesture, while the ROC and Russia are featured in news for the wrong reasons.

Daniil Aldoshkin of the Russian Olympic Committee team gives two middle fingers to the crowd after his team played out in the semi-finals of the men's team pursuit at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Tuesday, February 15, 2020.

Daniil Aldoshkin of the Russian Olympic Committee team gives two middle fingers to the crowd after his team played out in the semi-finals of the men’s team pursuit at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Tuesday, February 15, 2020.

“I threw up my hands, I have the first medal, the first Olympics,” Aldoshkin told RT.com after the race, apologizing for the incident, which was caught on camera.

“I didn’t mean anything like that. I’m sorry if this offended anyone,” he added.

Zakharov also stepped forward to protect his teammate.

“In speed skating, we fight against time, not against the enemy. It was a purely emotional reaction, ”said Zakharov RT.

The Russians set an Olympic record in their semi-final performance and advanced to the gold medal final against reigning champion Norway.

They crossed the finish line in 3:36.62 seconds, breaking the Olympic record of 3:37.08 set four years ago by the Norwegians.

But in the final, Norway won the gold medal of the second Olympics in a row, convincingly beating the Russians.

Halgeir Engebroten of the winning Norwegian team also defended the skater.

“I think it’s just a reaction to the fact that the guys reached the final. He explained everything, that’s enough for me, ”said the owner of the gold medal.

The Russians (pictured) set an Olympic record in their semi-final performance and advanced to the gold medal final against reigning champion Norway.

The Russians (pictured) set an Olympic record in their semi-final performance and advanced to the gold medal final against reigning champion Norway.

President of the Russian Skating Union Aleksey Kravtsov also apologized for celebrating Aldoshkin’s semi-finals, calling it a “splash of emotions”, emphasizing that there was no subtext behind this gesture.

“Emotions took over at the finish line, there was no subtext in this action,” Kravtsov told RT.

“We are sorry if someone took this situation differently and (she) offended someone. On behalf of the Russian Skating Union, we offer an official apology.”

Norway won the gold medal final in a time of 3 minutes 38.08 seconds – almost 2 1/2 seconds ahead of the Russian Olympic Committee.

The Norwegian trio of Hallgeir Engebraaten, Peder Kongshaug and Sverre Lunde Pedersen defeated the Netherlands in the semi-final and then took the lead in the final against the Republic of China. The US won bronze in a decisive third place.

The ROC is unable to compete under the Russian flag after the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) banned Russia from all international sports in 2019 after it was found to have manipulated data to protect athletes participating in a state-sponsored doping scheme. was discovered earlier in 2017.

In the final, Norway took the gold medal for the second consecutive Olympics, convincingly beating the Russians, who won silver.  Pictured: ROC team silver medalists Daniil Aldoshkin, Sergei Trofimov and Ruslan Zakharov pose with their medals on Tuesday.

In the final, Norway took the gold medal for the second consecutive Olympics, convincingly beating the Russians, who won silver. Pictured: ROC team silver medalists Daniil Aldoshkin, Sergei Trofimov and Ruslan Zakharov pose with their medals on Tuesday.

Although the penalty was reduced following a Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) review, Russian athletes were required to compete under the name ROC, not under the name “Russia” and under the Russian flag, in the Olympic Games held after WADA’s decision. .

However, the ROC found itself embroiled in another doping scandal during this year’s Winter Games, when it was revealed that 15-year-old Russian figure skating star Kamila Valieva tested positive for a banned drug in December.

The CAS ruled this week that she had committed a doping violation after one of her samples taken in December tested positive for trimetazidine, a heart drug that can also be used as doping.

But they allowed her to continue participating in the event, saying she was a “protected person” who could be “irreparably harmed” by the ban.

Olympic officials then announced that she would no longer be awarded medals at the games, and the medal ceremony would be canceled if she finished in the top three in further events, which she later did on Tuesday.

Before her performance on Tuesday, it was revealed that her team had said Valieva failed a drug test ahead of the Beijing Winter Olympics due to contamination from drugs her grandfather was taking.

And in addition to testing positive for the banned angina drug trimetazidine, a New York Times report said that yesterday, the Stockholm lab that analyzed Kamila Valieva’s sample also found evidence of two other heart drugs that aren’t on the banned list: hypoxen and L -carnitine.

The ROC found itself embroiled in yet another doping scandal during this year's Winter Olympics when it was revealed that 15-year-old Russian figure skating star Kamila Valieva (pictured Tuesday) tested positive for a banned drug in December.

The ROC found itself embroiled in yet another doping scandal during this year’s Winter Olympics when it was revealed that 15-year-old Russian figure skating star Kamila Valieva (pictured Tuesday) tested positive for a banned drug in December.

The Aldoshkin celebration also comes at a time when Russia is under fire for massing up to 150,000 troops on the border with Ukraine.

Although Western fears about the imminence of a Russian invasion of Ukraine have eased in recent days, they have not completely disappeared.

Diplomatic efforts to prevent war have been given a boost after Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia was ready to discuss security issues with NATO and Russia said it was withdrawing some of its troops from Ukraine’s borders.

But USA. President Joe Biden said there were 150,000 Russian troops in north, south and east Ukraine today, and Western officials said a Russian invasion could still happen in the blink of an eye.

The Russian Defense Ministry has announced that some units participating in military exercises will begin to return to their bases, a statement that German Chancellor Olaf Scholz took as a “good signal”.

The Russian Defense Ministry has published footage of the departure of a train of armored vehicles from the Crimea, which Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

After the men’s speed skating medal presentation, Aldoshkin took to Instagram about his experience of winning silver in Tuesday’s race.

“I want to write a lot of words, I want to express a lot of emotions, but then there will be too much text. In a word, everything worked out! — he wrote in the caption to a selection of photos in which he competes in Beijing.

“Once, at an interview, I created a bar for myself, by which I evaluate my results to this day – if the coach is satisfied, then I should be satisfied.

“The coach was pleased yesterday, I hope, in general, thank you very much to everyone, you have no idea how nice it is to receive words of support and congratulations from everyone,” Aldoshkin wrote, adding: “Ps silver heals bruises under the eyes. ‘

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