Mikaela Shiffrin admitted it was "not ideal" but expressed relief at her decision to skip Wednesday's downhill to focus on winning a second Pyeongchang gold in the alpine combined event 24 hours laterMikaela Shiffrin admitted it was "not ideal" but expressed relief at her decision to skip Wednesday's downhill to focus on winning a second Pyeongchang gold in the alpine combined event 24 hours later (AFP Photo/Fabrice COFFRINI)
Pyeongchang (South Korea) (AFP) - A doping case involving a medal-winning Russian curler rocked the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics on Monday, as Mikaela Shiffrin's turbulent Games took another twist when she pulled out of the downhill skiing.
Alexander Krushelnitsky's failed drug test came to light a week after he won mixed doubles bronze with his wife, Anastasia Bryzgalova, and could extend Russia's suspension from the Olympics.
The case, now with the Court of Arbitration for Sport, will be considered by Olympic officials deciding whether to lift Russia's ban in time for Sunday's closing ceremony.
"Should this case be proven... that will also be part of the consideration as to whether there will be an allowance for them to march in the closing ceremony under their flag," said International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams.
Russia were banned from the Olympics after investigations revealed an extensive doping plot culminating at the Sochi 2014 Winter Games, where the hosts topped the medals table.
But 168 Russian athletes declared clean after extensive vetting were allowed to compete in Pyeongchang as neutrals, under the banner of "Olympic Athletes from Russia".
"Only athletes for whom there was no suspicion were invited to the Games," Adams said, adding: "Unfortunately wherever there's competitive sport, you'll have people cheating.
"But I think you can be pretty confident we have a very, very thorough testing process in place and we have the experts with the expertise who are doing that."
Among Monday's events, Canada and Germany shared gold when they dead-heated in the two-man bobsleigh -- the first time two teams have shared the title since Nagano 1998.
Robert Johansson and his bushy handlebar moustache anchored Norway to victory in the men's team ski jump, while Havard Lorentzen won the men's 500m speed skating as Norway went clear on the medals table with 11 golds to Germany's 10.
- 'My worst nightmare' -
Shiffrin arrived in Pyeongchang capable of challenging, Michael Phelps-style, for five gold medals, but it has been a tough Games so far for the American.
After bombing in the slalom and pulling out of the super-G, she announced her withdrawal from the downhill on Monday as looming bad weather forced yet another schedule change.
It means that Shiffrin, who won the giant slalom, can finish with a maximum of two individual golds, with just Thursday's combined event left on her schedule.
"As much as I wanted to compete in the Olympic downhill, with the schedule change, it's important for me to focus my energy on preparing for the combined," said Shiffrin.
She made the announcement after Friday's combined was brought forward to Thursday to avoid bad weather. The downhill is scheduled for Wednesday.
Earlier on Monday, French officials said Shiffrin's partner, skier Mathieu Faivre, had been sent home for disciplinary reasons after an outburst following Sunday's men's giant slalom.
In figure skating, Canada's Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir smashed the short dance world record, but French rival Gabriella Papadakis was left in tears by an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction.
As Virtue and Moir glided, twizzled and spun their way to a best-ever score of 83.67, Papadakis performed stoically with her partner Guillaume Cizeron after her dress became unclipped early in their routine.
"It was pretty distracting, my worst nightmare at the Olympics," the 22-year-old Papadakis said. "I felt it right away and I prayed."