Russia elects new athletics president


Dmitry Shlyakhtin, the newly elected president of Russian athletics, has stated that gaining his country's inclusion to the 2016 Rio Olympics is his number one goal.

Shlyakhtin was appointed as the head of the Russian Athletics Federation on Saturday after a unanimous vote of over 100 officials at a conference in Moscow.

The sport was rocked in November last year when an independent commission set up by the World Anti-Doping Agency made allegations of state-sponsored doping in Russia.

Russia was subsequently suspended from world athletics by the IAAF, throwing their participation at the Games in Rio later this year into severe doubt.

"This is not an easy time for Russia, it is not an easy time for athletics," said Shlyakhtin.

"Going to the Olympic Games is task number one."

Russian sports minister Vitaly Mutko told TASS: "I hope he will be the candidate who can manage the task of restoring the lost position of our athletics."