A recent doping scandal resulted in Usain Bolt losing his 4x100m Olympic gold medal. It happened after the International Olympic committee (IOC) reanalyzed urine samples taken at 2008 Beijing Olympics. In the results, it found that Nesta Carter, member of Bolt’s relay team tested positive for a stimulant. Consequently, the IOC stripped Carter and his entire team comprising of Carter, Bolt, Asafa Powell and Michael Frater of their gold medal.
Bolt also loses his “Triple triple” record, with the loss of the medal. The popular sprinter is the only athlete to win all three sprint events at three Olympic Games. The news comes after IOC retested around 454 samples from the 2008 Beijing Olympics last year. Advanced testing methods found Carter’s sample positive for methylhexaneamine. The substance is already listed on World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) prohibited list since 2004. As a result, Carter faces possible suspension and Jamaica’s team will have to forfeit their gold.
An article in Jamaica Gleaner quotes Bolt saying that returning the gold medals is “heartbreaking.” This is because according to him, (athletes) work hard for years to accumulate the gold medals and to become champions. “Things happen in life, if it’s confirmed or whatever and I need to give back my gold medal it’s not a problem to me,” he added.
According to a BBC report, Dr Warren Blake, who is the head of Jamaica Athletics Administrative Association responded to the news by saying that he did not rule out the fact that Carter may be guilty. However, he did not expect the entire team to get punished. Carter’s lawyer too has come forward now, saying that the athlete will lodge an appeal in the Court of Arbitration for Sport.
Methylhexaneamine and Doping scandal timeline
According to a CNN report, methylhexaneamine is a stimulant listed as prohibited by the WADA since 2004. Till 1983, US sold the substance as a nasal decongestant. Nowadays, dietary supplements contain the substance. The Beijing Olympics in 2008 made headlines after the IOC caught nine athletes cheating. Later, it conducted tests on more than 4500 samples during the games.
Carter was one of the athletes tested on the evening of Beijing finals. However, his sample contained no “adverse analytical finding”. IOC decided to retest 454 samples with more advanced methods, after the committee found an anomaly in Carter’s sample. Carter’s sample A tested positive for methylhexaneamine. IOC informed Jamaican authorities about it before the Rio Games. The committe also told them that it would test Carter’s sample B, which also came positive for methylhexaneamine.
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