Biathletes lose doping ban appeals

LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- Russian biathletes Albina Akhatova and Yekaterina Iourieva have lost their appeal against two-year doping bans.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport on Friday upheld the bans imposed Aug. 11 by the International Biathlon Union.

Five-time Olympic medalist Akhatova and former world champion Iourieva tested positive for the banned endurance-boosting hormone EPO last December at a World Cup event in Ostersund, Sweden.

The IBU suspended them from the world championships in Pyeongchang, South Korea, last February, and later imposed two-year bans.

The sanctions run through December 2010, excluding Akhatova and Iourieva from the Vancouver Winter Olympics. Under IOC rules, they are also banned from the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.