was wrongly disqualified

On 20 August 2008, Churandy Martina won the silver medal in the 200 metres at the Olympics behind Usain Bolt in 19.82 seconds, the first time he had run sub-20s. He was the first medal winner for the Netherlands Antilles after Jan Boersma won silver in sailing at the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul.

But Churandy Martina later was disqualified after the U.S. team protest that he had run out of his lane. However, the Netherlands Antilles has appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in Lausanne to restore Churandy Martina as the second-place finisher in the men’s 200 meters, according to the Netherlands Antilles Olympic Committee website (NAOC): “The rules state quite clearly that the written protest should have been entered within 30 minutes after the official result announcement. The alleged protest form quite clearly stated that it was entered after this timeframe. Other evidence even showed that in the past the IAAF quite clearly didn’t approve other similar cases.” The NAOC requested the CAS to invalidate the procedure followed by the IAAF Jury of appeal and to annul the disqualification of Churandy Martina, mainly for formal reasons. USA Track and Field and the United States Olympic Committee have both requested to participate in this arbitration procedure.

Karel Frielink


Update 1

A CAS-hearing is expected to take place on 15 January 2009.

Update 2

Shawn Crawford won the silver medal after Churandy Martina was disqualified. Crawford is a real sportsman. He left the medal for Martina at a hotel during a meet in Zurich, Switzerland, shortly after the Olympics.

Update 3

On 6 March 2009, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has dismissed the appeal filed by the national Olympic Committee of the Netherlands Antilles (NAOC) against the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) with respect to the Men’s 200m final of the Beijing Olympic Games. In dismissing the appeal, the Sole Arbitrator noted that the procedures governing protests and appeals are set out in IAAF Rule CR 146 and that the same rule states that the decisions taken by the Jury of Appeal shall be final, and that there shall be no further right of appeal, including to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.


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