IAAF to discuss Paralympians competing in Olympics ‘in the coming weeks’

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The IAAF, track and field’s international governing body, will look into the possibility of Paralympians like German amputee long jumper Markus Rehm competing in the Rio Olympics “in the coming weeks,” an IAAF spokesman told Yahoo Sports.

Rehm, a 2012 Paralympic champion long jumper whose right leg was amputated below the knee after a boating accident at age 14, won the able-bodied German long jump title in 2014.

He would have won it this year, too, except he had to compete aside from the able-bodied jumpers after the German track and field federation “used biometric studies to rule that his carbon-fiber prosthesis gives him an unfair advantage,” according to The Associated Press.

Rehm said he would be willing to compete at the Olympics as he did in the German Championships, aside from the able-bodied athletes, according to Yahoo.

“I would offer to compete off of the rankings,” Rehm said, according to the report. “I would. I have a chance to win a medal in the Paralympics, and I’m quite fine with that. I don’t want to win the [Olympic] medal if it’s not clear I didn’t have an advantage. I am the one who has to sleep at night.”

Rehm leaped a personal-best 8.29m on May 16, which ranks him the seventh-best long jumper in the world this year.

Rehm has said his goal is to compete at the World Championships and Olympics, according to German press agency DPA, citing German outlet Sport Bild.

Rehm has also said he wants another investigation into whether his prosthetic right leg gives him a competitive advantage over able-bodied athletes.

Rehm would not be the first Paralympian to compete at the Olympics. The most famous was Oscar Pistorius, the double amputee who made the London 2012 400m semifinals. Pistorius could be released from prison and put on house arrest later this month after shooting and killing girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp on Valentine’s Day 2013.

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