The hurt of losing an Olympic gold medal
Olympic relay gold medallist Michael Frater said it hurt him badly that he had to give up the gold medal he won at the 2008 Beijing Olympics because of a teammate was determined to have been taking a prohibited substance.
In China, Frater, who was sixth in the men’s 100m final in 9.97s, was in imperious form in the 4×100 relay final, scorching the backstretch before handing the baton to Usain Bolt who dominated the curve before passing the baton to Asafa Powell, who stormed down the homestretch to bring Jamaica home in a world-record 37.10.
It was Frater’s first Olympic gold medal and Bolt’s third, the latter having won the 100m and 200m finals in world record time just days earlier.
Four years later, Frater was once again on Jamaica’s team at the 2012 London Games that lowered the world record to 36.84s and for a while, it seemed as if he and his teammates would go into retirement with at least two Olympics gold medals.
However, in 2016 news emerged that lead-off runner Nesta Carter’s urine sample from 2008 had turned up the presence of the stimulant methylhexanamine.
“Everybody was shocked. It was a surreal moment for me. I couldn’t actually believe what was going on. I just thought that something would have come out to show that it was a mistake or something like that,” Frater said during an interview on SportsNation Live on Nationwide Radio on Saturday.”
Carter contested the charge before the Court of Arbitration for Sport but in 2018, CAS upheld the charge and Jamaica was subsequently stripped of their gold medal. The news was devastating to Frater, who is still in a state of disbelief.
“To this day, I am always thinking that they will go back and find there was something wrong or something like that because it was that first moment, that first Olympic gold, that special moment in my life,” he said.
“I will always think that we won that gold medal, nobody can tell me otherwise. I don’t know exactly what happened but it was a shock. It will hurt me for the rest of my life.” (Sportsmax)