National Association of Athletics Administrations of Trinidad and Tobago

media_artricles :: 2017


Burns: The joy has gone

Newsday :: 26.01.2017

TRINIDAD and Tobago Olympian Marc Burns described the feeling as "bitter- sweet," after hearing the news that this country may receive a third Olympic gold medal, following the stripping of Jamaica's 2008 Olympic 4x100-metre gold medal for doping.

It was announced yesterday, that a re-analysis of Jamaican Nesta Carter's samples from the Beijing Olympics resulted in a positive test for the prohibited substance methylhexaneamine.

Therefore, Jamaica's gold medal in the men's 4x100-metre relay at the 2008 Games will be rescinded, as Carter was part of the quartet.

The TT foursome of Richard Thompson, Burns, Emmanuel Callender and Keston Bledman, earned silver behind Jamaica and should be upgraded to gold.

Speaking to Newsday yesterday, Burns admitted: "It's a bitter- sweet feeling for me because it's obviously a great achievement to have a gold medal. But it also came almost a decade later, so it really took away the joy of being on the podium and celebrating with my teammates then and there at the Olympics Games." Asked if he feels vindicated as a clean athlete, Burns said, "As an athlete all I focus on is putting my best foot forward for my country, and hope that the outcome is favourable.

In this case it resulted in gold and I'm thankful." The TT team did not get the opportunity to sing their national anthem in Beijing and Burns acknowledged these lost moments cannot be recaptured.

"(I'm) not hurt, but disappointed that my country couldn't share that memorable moment with the team." This is the second time the TT athletes have had to endure a situation like this. Thompson, Burns, Callender and Bledman, had their bronze medal upgraded to a silver medal in the 4x100m relay at the 2012 London Olympics.

Tyson Gay, who was part of USA 4x100m team that snatched silver, tested positive for a banned substance.

The other Jamaican athletes that will be affected by Carter's doping, are Michael Frater, Asafa Powell and legendary sprinter Usain Bolt. Bolt's legendary status may be affected after he initially completed the "triple, triple, triple" at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

Bolt won gold in the men's 100m, men's 200m and men's 4x100m events in the last three Olympics Games, before the news broke yesterday.

Speaking in June 2016 concerning Carter's alleged doping, Bolt said the prospect of having to return the gold was "heartbreaking".

He told the Jamaica Gleaner: "For years you've worked hard to accumulate gold medals and you work hard to be a champion, but it's one of those things. I'm more concerned about the athlete and I hope he (Carter) gets through it." The IOC statement said, "As part of this process, the IOC today announced that two athletes have been disqualified from the Olympic Games Beijing 2008.

The details follow.

Nesta Carter, 31, of Jamaica, competing in the men's 4x100m relay event (round one and final) in which he and his teammates ranked 1st and for which they were awarded the gold medal, has been disqualified from the Olympic Games Beijing 2008. Re-analysis of Carter's samples from Beijing 2008 resulted in a positive test for the prohibited substance methylhexaneamine." Tatiana Lebedeva, 40, of Russia, tested positive for the prohibited substance dehydrochlormethyltestosterone (turinabol). Lebedeva grabbed silver medals in both the women's triple jump and women's long jump events.

Despite the national euphoria on social media yesterday, president of the TT Olympic Committee Brian Lewis tried to curtail the excitement, instead urging patience.

"The TT Olympic Committee has not at this time received any official communication from the International Olympic Committee in respect of the TT Beijing 2008 Olympic Games men's 4x100m relay team.

"It is therefore premature of the TTO C to speculate on any upgrading of the TT Beijing 2008 Olympic Games men's 4x100m relay team medals from silver to gold. The IOC has its protocols and procedures in respect of medal upgrades.

"As such, we have taken note of the IOC Disciplinary Commission Decision and official press release. The TTO C will fully cooperate with the IOC and look forward to a quick resolution." Lewis was a bit melancholy yesterday discussing what transpired with Jamaica who are TT 's Caribbean neighbours. "It is always a disappointing and an unfortunate situation when an athlete from any country is embroiled in such a situation and, moreso a Caribbean athlete.

"If Trinidad and Tobago, we aren't in the hunt for some reason, of course we want a Caribbean athlete or Caribbean team to defeat the teams from the other continents and region. It gives me no satisfaction that in this case it is Jamaica."am


Burns: The joy has gone
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