July 19, 2005

CAS decision on Thursday on U.S. gold medal appeal

LONDON (Reuters) - The Court of Arbitration (CAS) will rule
on Thursday (0800 GMT) on a plea by the U.S. Olympic Committee
to save the gold medals won by the American 4x400 meters relay
team at the 2000 Olympics.

Last year CAS ruled that world 400 meters champion Jerome
Young, one of six members of the Sydney squad who included five
times Olympic gold medallist Michael Johnson, should have been
banned from the Games after failing a drugs test in the
previous year.

The independent Lausanne-based body had been asked by the
International Association of Athletics (IAAF) to recommend
stripping all the gold medals and elevating Nigeria from second

In October the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) asked CAS to
order the IAAF and International Olympic Committee "to desist
in their efforts to change the results."

Two other members of the U.S. team, twins Alvin and Calvin
Harrison, have been banned for subsequent doping offences while
Young is now banned for life after a positive test for the
blood booster EPO (erythropoietin) last year.