Evgeny Ustyugov and his compatriot Svetlana Slepstova have written an open letter asking for their own representatives to take part in the assessment of data from Moscow's Anti-Doping Laboratory ©Getty Images

Russian Olympic biathlon champions Evgeny Ustyugov and Svetlana Slepstova have asked that their own representatives take part in the review of data from the Moscow Anti-Doping Laboratory alongside investigators from the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).

A five-strong team from WADA is currently in the Russian capital taking possession of the pivotal Laboratory Information Management System and the underlying raw data stored in the building, with the hope this will allow more cheats to be caught.

Now retired athletes Ustyugov and Slepstova, who won medals across the 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympic Games, were both implicated in the Russian doping scandal but have since protested their innocence.

According to a report from the Russian State News Agency TASS, the pair have written a joint letter to WADA asking for their own representatives to be involved in assessing the laboratory data so that "justice will be served, and our reputation will be restored".

In it they say the investigation against them is "unjustified" because it is based solely on evidence provided by the whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov.

"At the moment we are involved in disciplinary proceedings at the International Biathlon Union [IBU]," the letter reads.

"The IBU's unjustified and unfounded accusations of anti-doping rule violations are based exclusively on the 'evidence' received from Mr Rodchenkov and, in particular, on a copy from the LIMS system data from the Moscow Anti-Doping Lab provided by an 'unidentified person'.

Representatives from WADA have been at the Moscow Laboratory this week collecting data ©Getty Images
Representatives from WADA have been at the Moscow Laboratory this week collecting data ©Getty Images 

"We know that currently it has been agreed for the WADA experts to be granted access to the records of the Moscow Anti-Doping Lab.

"We believe this is our only chance to see the truth prevail.

"We ask for our representatives to be allowed to take part in the review of the electronic archives' data of the Moscow Anti-Doping Lab, and to provide them with authentic copies of the LIMS data in relation to our samples.

“We hope that the justice will be served, and our reputation will be restored."

According to TASS, the letter has also been sent to the International Olympic Committee, the Russian Sports Ministry, the Russian Olympic Committee, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency and the Russian Biathlon Union.

Ustyugov retired following the 2014 Games in Sochi, while Slepstova, who won Olympic relay gold in Vancouver in 2010, quit after the World Biathlon Championships last year at which she won three golds.

In their letter they also state that both of them have been "continuously included in the doping testing pool" and that they have passed "more than 100 doping tests", many of which were conducted outside of Russia and all of which were "recognised as clean".

Granting access to the data stored in the Moscow Laboratory was one of the key criteria the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) had to meet before being reinstated by WADA.

However, amid a deadlock, WADA changed the criteria and reinstated RUSADA on the condition that it be granted access to the laboratory by December 31.

Elsewhere, according to another report in TASS, the schedule for the restoration of the Russian Biathlon Union as a full member of the IBU will be submitted in January.

It follows a meeting of the IBU held in Moscow, at which the restoration of the RBU’s membership was reportedly discussed.

The Russian body was relegated to provisional membership last year following the doping scandal.