Lausanne: Usain Bolt lost one of his nine Olympic gold medals Wednesday when the International Olympic Committee stripped Jamaica of their 4x100m relay win at the 2008 Beijing Games after Nesta Carter was caught doping.
The decision which follows the re-testing of hundreds of samples from the Beijing event, means that Bolt, as Carter's teammate, loses one of the three gold medals he won at that Olympics.
Carter was found to have tested positive for banned substance Methylhexanamine, which was once used in nasal decongestants but now is more commonly found as an ingredient in dietary supplements.
The loss of the relay gold deprives Bolt of one of his 'triple triples' - he won gold in the 100m, 200 and the 4x100m at Beijing and then went on to repeat the feat in London in 2012 and again in Rio last year.
The IOC said in a statement that in the case of Carter, 31, re-analysis of his 2008 samples "resulted in a positive test for the prohibited substance methylhexaneamine".
The IOC Disciplinary Commission ruled that Carter "is found to have committed an anti-doping rule violation pursuant to the IOC Anti-Doping Rules applicable to the Games of the XXIX Olympiad in Beijing in 2008."
Crusade against drugs
As such, he "is disqualified from the men’s 4x100m relay event" and must return his medal while the team is likewise disqualified and must hand back their medals.
Trinidad and Tobago, who came second, are promoted to gold medal winners, while Japan and Brazil move up to second and third place respectively.
The IOC said that Russia's Tatiana Lebedeva, who won silver in the women's triple jump event and long jump in 2008, had also been disqualified following re-analysis of her samples, which showed up positive for the steroid dehydrochlormethyltestosterone (turinabol), also on the banned list.
"I received that information (she would lose her Beijing medals) a long ago, in the autumn," Lebedeva told Sport Express.
"I can say for sure that I never intended to dope and I do not consider myself being guilty of cheating.
"Of course, nobody has proof against accidental mistakes. But even if I made a mistake, it should be proved in court," said Lebedeva, saying her lawyer was working on an appeal even if she rated her chances of succeeding as "minimal".
The IOC has been re-testing hundreds of samples from Beijing 2008 and London 2012 as latest technology allows experts to detect new cases which were previously undetectable.
To date, 1,243 samples from the Beijing and London Games have been re-analysed.
Last month the IOC's medical director Richard Budgett said he expected to see further cases of doping emerge from re-testing of London samples following 101 positive cases from those Games in 2016.
On 12 January, the IOC announced three Chinese weightlifting champions from the 2008 Games had tested positive for the banned GHRP-2, a human growth hormone.
Following last month's publication of the McLaren report into state doping in Russia the IOC indicated 32 Russian athletes who participated at the Sochi Winter Games in 2014 were facing a disciplinary procedure for alleged doping.
Russia has denied state-sponsored doping.
Referring to Lebedeva's case, Russia's Athletics Federation (RusAF) chief Dmitry Shlyakhtin regretted what he termed a "sad echo of the past".
He told Russia's TASS news agency: "RusAF regrets that such things happen to outstanding people like Lebedeva."
In the case of relay events, if one member of the team is found to have used illegal substances, the whole team is stripped of their medals, thus reducing Bolt's achievements to a 'mere' Beijing double to go with his triples in London and Rio.
Published Date: Jan 25, 2017 20:45 PM | Updated Date: Jan 25, 2017 22:32 PM