Sydney 100m gold will remain vacant, says IOC

Sydney 100m gold will remain vacant, says IOC

Medal stripped from drug cheat Marion Jones two years ago

In line with IOC practice, controversial Greek sprinter Katerina Thanou, who finished second behind Jones in Sydney, would have been expected to receive the gold medal.

Instead, the record books will show no gold in the flagship women's sprint at Sydney but two silvers, an IOC spokesman said after an executive board meeting in Lausanne yesterday.
Third-placed finisher Tanya Lawrence of Jamaica was promoted to silver alongside Thanou.

Lawrence's compatriot Merlene Ottey was awarded a bronze medal instead of fourth place.
It is believed to be the first time in the modern history of the Games that an Olympic event will not have a gold medallist, IOC officials said, although they were unable to check immediately.

"The actual awarding of a gold medal, of any medal, is certainly not a right and therefore in this case it will not happen," IOC spokesman Mark Adams told journalists.
Adams underlined Thanou's more recent problems, notably evading anti-doping tests in 2004, in which, he added, "she disgraced herself."

"It's felt that with her conduct she didn't deserve to be honoured with this recognition," Adams said.

Jones's 200m gold went to Pauline Davis-Thompson of the Bahamas with Sri Lanka's Susanthika Jayasinghe moving up into second and Jamaica's Beverly McDonald stepped onto the podium with bronze.
Jones was stripped of all her medals she won nine years ago after admitting doping offences, and was sent to prison in the United States after lying to federal investigators.

Re-awarding the 100m gold had posed a challenge to the IOC, because second placed Thanou was in subsequent years immersed in controversy over doping related issues.
Although no evidence has been presented to indicate she was taking drugs when running against Jones in Sydney, Thanou faces a court case for allegedly lying to Greek police to avoid a drug test at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, and served a two year disciplinary ban.
The Greek runner was ultimately barred from competing at the Olympic Games in Beijing last year for bringing athletics into disrepute.
Jones's long jump bronze was given to Russian Tayana Kotova, the IOC said Wednesday.
Legal wrangling is still underway over the US women's 4x400m relay gold and 4x100 bronze at Sydney, where Jones was part of the teams. A case is still pending before the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS).

The other individual medals won by Jones - gold in the 200 metre and bronze in the long jump - have been reallocated.
Pauline Davis-Thompson of the Bahamas moves from silver to gold in the 200 m, with Sri Lanka's Susanthika Jayasinghe bumped up from bronze to silver and Jamaica's Beverly McDonald moving from from fourth to third.
Russia's Tatyana Kotova gets the long jump bronze.
Thanou and fellow Greek sprinter Kostas Kenteris missed drug tests on the eve of the opening of the Athens Games. They were then kicked out of the Olympics by the IOC in the affair which also involved an alleged motorcycle accident.
The athletes were banned for two years each by the athletics body IAAF and Thanou barred by the IOC from competing in Beijing 2008.
While there is no evidence that Thanou used doping substances in 2000, the IOC was against giving her the gold won by Jones.
"It was disgraceful behaviour by her and this is a unique situation," IOC spokesman Mark Adams said.
He added that IOC believes it has "a strong moral and a good legal case" for its decision.
The distribution of the relay medals, meanwhile, depends on a ruling by the Court of Arbitration set for Dec 18.
The IOC stripped the US relays of their medals but Jones's teammates have appealed before CAS to keep their medals.
The US won the 4x400 m from Jamaica, Russia and Nigeria, while France were fourth behind the US in the 4x100 m.