The fraud of Bulgaria, an annotated timeline


I’ve posted this elsewhere first, but now for posterity.

1988: At the Seoul Olympic Games, winners Mitko Grablev and Angel Genchev fail their doping tests and after the second ban the Bulgarian federation withdraws the rest of the team. This scandal causes the IOC to threaten to eliminate weightlifting as an Olympic sport. Head coach Ivan Abadjiev resigns.

1989-1994: Four lifters fail newly instituted training tests, including junior world champion Mitko Mitev.

1995: Seven lifters fail a pre-WWC training test, including world champion Petar Stefanov and world medalists Angel Genchev (again), Radostin Panayotov, Zhaneta Georgieva plus Daniela Kerkelova.

1996-1999: Three lifters fail tests including world champion Milena Trendafilova and a minor.

2000: A repeat of 1988. At the Sydney Olympic Games, winner Izabela Dragneva and medalists Ivan Ivanov plus Sevdalin Minchev fail the doping test. The rest of the Bulgarian team gets banned. Ivan Abadjiev gets dismissed once more (he was head coach again since 1997). Petar Tanev and Andrei Ivanov, two Bulgarians lifting for Qatar, don’t enter the competition due to “sudden sickness”.

2003: Olympic/world champions Galabin Boevski, Georgi Markov and Zlatan Vanev try to cheat a pre-WWC training test by submitting an identical extrinsic sample. Boevski’s ban is the second after 1995.

2004-2007: Three lifters fail training tests including Olympic/world medalist Alan Tsagaev.

2006: Under Bulgarian head coach Georgi Ivanov nine Iranian lifters fail a pre-WWC training test, including a minor. Ivanov gets banned for life.

2008: Eleven lifters fail a pre-OG training test. Bulgaria withdraws from the Olympics. This is the second ban for Georgi Markov, Alan Tsagaev and Ivan Stoitsov. Others include world champion Donka Mincheva and Olympic/world medalists Velichko Cholakov, Demir Demirev, Ivaylo Filev plus Gergana Kirilova.

2009-2011: There are no Bulgarian lifters at three consecutive world championships.

2009-2013: Five lifters fail tests, including Youth Olympics winner Georgi Shikov.

2009-2013: Under Bulgarian coach Stefan Stefanov five Malaysian lifters fail tests.

2013: Under Bulgarian head coach Zlatan Vanev (cf. 2003) eighteen Azerbaijani lifters fail tests, inculding former Bulgarians and two minors.

2015: Eleven lifters fail a pre-EWC training test, including a minor. As a consequence Bulgaria gets banned from entering the next Olympics and Youth Olympics per violation of the qualification rules.

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