Usain Bolt and his impressive haul of nine Olympic Gold medals across three different games is now slightly less impressive.
Bolt and his teammates from the Jamaica 4 x 100m relay team have been stripped of their Gold medals from the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, a result of the stored sample of Nesta Carter testing positive for a banned stimulant. Carter ran the opening leg of the relay for Jamaica, but the entire team loses their medals as a result of the failed drug test, bring Bolt’s total down to eight Gold medals.
If you’re wondering why they are still testing samples from 2008, it’s because they stored 454 athlete samples so that they could be retested when more accurate testing methods that weren’t available at the time. Consider it part of the the ongoing “PED arms race” that is being fought between dopers and testing organizations. Both of Carter’s A and B samples tested positive for methylhexanamine.
The new results of the 2008 4 x 100m relay race has Trinidad and Tobago moving up to Gold, Japan getting the Silver, and Brazil going from off the podium and up to the Bronze.
The IAAF has officially asked for the medals back, although they claim that only works about half the time. Often athletes just refuse to give them up. As for Bolt, he already told Reuters that he would give it back, before the decision was finalized.
“It’s heartbreaking because over the years you’ve worked hard to accumulate gold medals and work hard to be a champion … but it’s just one of those things,” Bolt said last summer.
“Things happen in life, so when it’s confirmed or whatever, if I need to give back my gold medal I’d have to give it back, it’s not a problem for me.”
Carter also ran in the 2012 version of the 4 x 100m relay, where Bolt and Jamaica also won Gold. Expect his samples from the London Games to be heavily tested.