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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 October, 2004, 07:59 GMT 08:59 UK
USA battle to keep Sydney golds
Michael Johnson (centre) and his Sydney relay team-mates
The 4x400m gold was the last of Johnson's (centre) career
A recommendation for the United States' 4x400m team from the 2000 Olympics to lose their gold medals is being challenged by the US Olympic Committee.

The IAAF advised that the team should lose their medals because of a doping scandal involving Jerome Young.

Only the International Olympic Committee can remove the medals and it will wait for the recommendations of the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

The US Olympic Committee is contesting that only Young lose his medal.

The USOC and five team members - Johnson, twins Alvin and Calvin Harrison, Antonio Pettigrew and Jerome Taylor - have filed an appeal with CAS in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Young is not covered by the appeal.

The appeal is directed against the IAAF and the IOC.

Young tested positive for the steroid nandrolone in 1999, but was exonerated by a US appeals panel in July 2000, avoiding a two-year ban.

If CAS upholds the decision of the IAAF, then of course the medals will be removed
Jacques Rogge
IOC president
He ran in the opening and semi-final rounds of the 2000 Olympics in Sydney, but not in the final.

Johnson ran the anchor leg in the final for the fifth and last Olympic gold medal of his career.

All six members of the relay squad received gold medals.

US Track & Field never gave the IAAF specifics about the Young case, citing confidentiality rules in place at the time. Young's name became public only last year.

The IAAF ruled in July that the entire team should lose their medals because Jones should have been ineligible to compete.

The IOC put off a decision in August pending resolution of all appeals.

"If CAS upholds the decision of the IAAF, then of course the medals will be removed," IOC president Jacques Rogge said.

If the US team loses its case, Nigeria will be upgraded to gold, Jamaica to silver and the Bahamas to bronze.

Young, the world 400m champion in 2003, tested positive for the endurance-boosting drug EPO in July at a meeting in Paris.

He faces a possible lifetime ban if found guilty of the second doping offense.

The case is being handled by the US Anti-Doping Agency.

Both Harrison brothers have also been banned for doping.


SEE ALSO
Johnson could lose Olympic gold
01 Oct 03  |  Athletics



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