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Austrian Dropped from 50-Kilometer Race After Failing Drug Test

<p>Johannes Duerr is the fifth athlete to fail a drug test at the Sochi Games, according to Olympic officials.</p>

An Austrian cross country skier scheduled to compete in the 50-kilometer race was suspended from the Olympics after testing positive for a blood-doping drug, Olympic and team officials said.

Johannes Duerr was withdrawn from the last ski race of the Sochi Games and dropped from the team, Austria Olympic Committee President Karl Stoss said.

Officials said Duerr failed a Feb. 16 test for recombinant erythropoietin, known as EPO, which allows the blood to deliver more oxygen to the muscles. Duerr had finished eighth in the men's skiathlon Feb. 9.

He is the fifth athlete to fail a test for drugs at Sochi. The others, according to the IOC: Latvian men’s hockey player Vitalijs Pavlovs, Italian bobsleigher William Frullani, German biathlete Evi Sachenbacher-Stehle and Ukraine cross-country skier Marina Lisogor.