Wednesday, May 18 2022

Australian sports icon Raelene Boyle.Credit:Simon schluter

At least nine swimmers, including Ford and Lisa Curry, Olympic freestyle gold medalists in Moscow, are expected to receive retrospective medals from the Games. Ford will add two gold medals in the 400m freestyle and the 200m butterfly to the gold in the 800m freestyle that she won at the 1980 Games.

Ford is the only swimmer from outside the Eastern Bloc to win gold at the 1980 Games. Of the 11 women’s gold medals awarded in the pool, nine were won by East Germans, one by a Russian swimmer and one by Ford.

Other swimmers vying for a review of the results include: Rosemary Milgate, Curry, Janelle Elford, Julie McDonald, Nicole Livingstone, Lara Hooiveld, Fiona Allesandri and Karen van Wirdum.

It is documented in declassified Stasi files that German Renate Stecher, who beat Boyle in the 100 and 200 meters in Munich, was part of the state-run doping program, but in 2015 Stecher told the ‘ABC: “I was an athlete. Everything was clean and correct as far as I was concerned.

Boyle said that one of the challenges she has always faced is that in 1972 testosterone was not a banned substance. So while there is evidence, contained in Stasi records, that athletes were given testosterone, at the time there was no rule against it.

She said the period should be treated as an extraordinary historical event and that medals were awarded retrospectively.

“I think they should say now, even though it wasn’t banned at the time, this particular substance that women were taking was a performance enhancing substance and it was really the CIO that let us down.” , Boyle said.

“They did not consider that a country would fill its elite female athletes with male testosterone.

“I just think it’s convenient to ignore it because it’s too difficult. But I think they have to.

“They tried to make rules, so you can’t fix it – an eight-year retrospective rule, I mean how ridiculous it is. That, to me, is admitting “we know, but there is nothing we can do about it, so let’s eliminate the problem by saying that we will have an eight year looking back rule and once you get to that you won’t be able to do anything. do it ‘.

“The big frustration for me is that all the documentation is in place. The names are all listed … and I don’t think half of those people knew what they were given.

“Everything is documented. Stasi files, there are a lot of things the public can’t get into, but I can go to Renate Stecher’s file because it affected my life and it’s all there. I saw documents about what she took and she admitted it and wanted without it because she wanted to have children later in life.

“In the Stasi Museum they have a space dedicated to what happened in sport and the testosterone given to these talented young East German athletes.

“It’s a proven thing, it’s a historical event well documented by the country that executed them. It’s not someone making allegations against the country, it’s the country that says we have does that to our athletes.

“He’s there and a lot of athletes around the world have been cheated and I just think the IOC should come back with the medals.”

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