February 24, 2006

All Austrian athletes negative – team

By Sophie Hardach

SESTRIERE, Italy (Reuters) - All 10 Austrian athletes
tested during a drugs swoop last Saturday by International
Olympic Committee (IOC) officials at the Winter Games have
proved negative, Leo Wallner, president of the Austrian Olympic
Committee, told Reuters on Friday.

The Austrian biathlon and cross-country skiing teams have
been the subject of an IOC and police investigation after blood
transfusion equipment was found at lodgings in the raid.

"It's a good result for us. All the tests were negative,"
said Wallner before an emergency news conference in Sestriere.

The IOC confirmed the samples were all negative. "The
samples did not show up any adverse findings," said IOC
director of communications, Giselle Davies, in a news
conference in Turin.

"The IOC takes this affair very seriously and will do what
it can within its power to bring full clarity to what happened
over the last days."

"What has been ruled out is the use of any stimulants,
anabolic steroids," said Arne Ljungvist, head of the IOC
medical commission. "The standard menu has been used for this
analysis and this was negative."