Ex-Skier Admits Paying Doping Doctor, Denies It Was for Banned Substances ({{commentsTotal}})

Retired professional cross-country skier Raul Olle has admitted to transferring 10,500 kroons (670 euros) to Vitali Bernatski in 2002, who said he helped many Estonian athletes to use banned substances.

Commenting on evidence held by daily Eesti Päevaleht, the former skier said that he does not remember why he transferred the money to Bernatski, but denies using banned substances.

The daily also has receipts from a few weeks before the transfer of Bernatski buying 8,600 kroons' (550 euros) worth of growth hormones from a Tartu pharmacy.

A former sports doctor, Bernatski said in mid-December that he supplied many top Estonian athletes with the banned substance EPO between 1995 and 2007, prompting an investigation by anti-doping authorities.

Bernatski handed a list of the accused athletes over the authorities on Tuesday, but neither he nor the police have made that list public.

The 45-year-old Olle's highest achievement came in 2000 when we won the 90-kilometer Vasaloppet, he also came close to winning a marathon four years later. Olle participated in the 1998 and 2002 Winter Olympics, finishing in the top 20 twice.