Usain Bolt ‘not sad’ after returning Olympic gold medal

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(AP) — Usain Bolt says he is resigned to the fact that he’s lost one of his nine Olympic gold medals, but isn’t holding any grudges against drug-tainted Jamaican relay teammate Nesta Carter.

Carter has said he will appeal after re-analysis of his sample from the 2008 Beijing Games using more advanced scientific methods returned a positive test to the prohibited stimulant methylhexaneamine.

The result announced by the International Olympic Committee last week meant Jamaica was stripped of the 4x100m relay gold, one of Bolt’s unprecedented three gold medals at three consecutive Olympics at Beijing, London in 2012 and Rio de Janeiro last year.

Bolt and fellow Jamaican sprinter Asafa Powell arrived in Melbourne on Wednesday for a Nitro Athletics meet which begins Saturday.

“Initially (I was) disappointed, of course,” Bolt said at Melbourne airport.

“But in life, things happen … I’m not sad, I’m waiting to see if Nesta is going to appeal or whatever,” Bolt added. “So right now I’m just waiting to see what’s going to happen. But I gave up my medal.”

Carter teamed with Bolt on three straight world championship relay-winning teams, from 2011 through 2015. Carter also took an individual bronze in the 100m in 2013 in Moscow, behind Bolt and Justin Gatlin of the United States.

Carter, who did not compete at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics last year, faces a ban from the IAAF.

Bolt, Powell and Michael Frater, the fourth member of the relay team which crossed the line in a world record time of 37.1 seconds at the Beijing Games, are all in Melbourne to compete in the Nitro Athletics series.

The meet held over three nights will feature six teams of 24 track and field athletes — 12 women and 12 men — from Australia, an international team representing the Bolt All-Stars, China, England, Japan, and New Zealand.

Organizers say the team-based competition “combines strength, endurance, power and extreme energy” and includes sprint, distance, field and para-athletic events. The series continues on Feb. 9 and 11, also at Melbourne’s Lakeside Stadium.

Former 100m world record holder Powell also served a doping ban in 2014 after testing positive to the stimulant oxilofrine, although his sanction was reduced from 18 months to six following a successful appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

“We went out there as a team and we did what we had to do,” Powell said Wednesday.

“It’s very unfortunate, and we have to look to the future. We’ve accomplished a lot, and we just need to be positive about everything right now. I’m in no position to say what should and should not be (banned). It is what it is. Some things aren’t fair.”

MORE: NFL WR wants to train with Bolt

South Korea’s first gold medalist of 2018 PyeongChang Olympics to compete for China

Lim Hyo-Jun
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Lim Hyo-Jun, a short track speed skater who won South Korea’s first gold medal of the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics, has been cleared to skate for China and was reportedly named to the national team Monday.

Lim, who won the 1500m on the first day of medal competition at the PyeongChang Games, began the process of switching to China after a June 2019 incident where he pulled down a teammate’s trousers, leaving him standing, exposed, in front of female teammates.

Lim, the 2019 World overall champion, was banned from the team for a year and later found guilty of sexual harassment before the verdict was overturned on appeal.

It was reported in March 2021 that Lim was in the process of trying to gain Chinese nationality to compete at the Beijing Winter Olympics, but Lim was not cleared to switch by the International Skating Union until this July. His Chinese name is Lin Xiaojun.

Another star South Korean skater, triple 2006 Olympic gold medalist Ahn Hyun-Soo, switched to Russia after not making the 2010 Olympic team. He then won three golds for the host nation as Viktor Ahn at the 2014 Sochi Games.

China’s national team for the upcoming season reportedly does not include veterans Wu Dajing, the nation’s lone gold medalist across all sports at the 2018 Olympics, and Fan Kexin, a three-time Olympic medalist.

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Brigid Kosgei, world record holder, to miss London Marathon

Brigid Kosgei
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World record holder Brigid Kosgei withdrew before Sunday’s London Marathon due to a right hamstring injury that has bothered her for the last month.

“My training has been up and down and not the way I would like to prepare to be in top condition,” was posted on Kosgei’s social media. “We’ve decided it’s best I withdraw from this year’s race and get further treatment on my injuries in order to enter 2023 stronger than ever.”

Kosgei, a 28-year-old Kenyan mother of twins, shattered the world record by 81 seconds at the 2019 Chicago Marathon. She clocked 2:14:04 to smash Brit Paula Radcliffe‘s record from 2003.

Since, Kosgei won the 2020 London Marathon, took silver at the Tokyo Olympics, placed fourth at the 2021 London Marathon and won this past March’s Tokyo Marathon in what was then the third-fastest time in history (2:16:02).

Ethiopian Tigist Assefa moved into the top three by winning the Berlin Marathon last Sunday in 2:15:37.

The London Marathon women’s field includes Kenyan Joyciline Jepkosgei, a winner in New York City (2019) and London (2021), and Yalemzerf Yehualaw, who was the Ethiopian record holder until Assefa won in Berlin.

The men’s field is headlined by Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele, the second-fastest male marathoner in history, and Brit Mo Farah, a four-time Olympic champion on the track.

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