It was a perturbing 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics experience for ROC's figure skating prodigy Kamila Valieva. It was all historic until the test results were confirmed on February 8.
The 15-year-old tested positive for trimetazidine on December 25, 2021. It is a metabolic agent prescribed for the treatment of angina and vertigo, which also boosts endurance.
A few days prior to the entire outrage, Valieva and the ROC team won gold medals on February 5. The 15-year-old phenomenon scripted history in Beijing after she pulled off two quadruple jumps during a free skate team event.
Although Valieva was allowed to compete, after CAS declined to impose a provisional suspension, the entire drug scandal took an enormous toll on her.
It was agonizing to witness Valieva's breakdown as the entire world saw her crumbling during her free skate event.
Valieva, who was an overwhelming favorite to win gold, could only manage a fourth-place finish after struggling to stay upright. Just a few minutes into her performance, her dreams shattered as she failed again.
Nothing seemed to work in the 15-year-old's favor. Unstable landings and sloppy turns were among other things that fell apart for the skater as she ended up straddled on the ice by the end.
IOC President 'very disturbed' after seeing Kamila Valieva performance:
International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach was disheartened to see a performer as brilliant as skater Valieva fall several times during her performance on Friday.
Thomas Bach said during a press conference:
"I must say I was very disturbed yesterday when I watched the competition on TV. In her performance how high the pressure on her must have been. And I know from my time as an athlete, a little bit about the pressure. But this pressure is beyond my imagination. And particularly for the girl of 15-year-old to see her struggling on ice, seeing how she try to compose herself and trying to finish her program."
He further added:
"You could feel in every moment and body language that this is an immense immense mental stress and that maybe you know she would have preferred just to leave the ice and try to leave this story behind her."
In addition to the entire chaos, one particular thing that caught Bach's attention was the way Valieva was treated by her coaches and contingent.
"But this was not all, When I afterward saw how she was received by her closest entourage with what appeared to be a tremendous coldness. It was chilling to see this rather than giving her comfort and trying to help her. You could feel this chilling atmosphere. This distance and if you were interpreting this body language of them it got even worse and some kind of dismissive gesture."