Jon Gugala just sent us this story, about noon, so it is hot off the digital presses. Here is the latest on Gabriele Anderson’s latest challenge. At 12.29 PM Jury of Appeals allows Anderson to advance to the final! Here was the background!
By Jon Gugala
June 30, 2012
At 6:29 P.M. on Friday, June 29, Gabriele Anderson was having a very good day. She’d advanced through a physical semifinal heat of the women’s 1,500-meters, taking second to 2008 U.S. Olympic trials defending champ Shannon Rowbury in 4 minutes, 10.08 seconds. After previously beating cancer–twice–all that stood between Anderson and an Olympic spot was beating nine other finalists on Sunday.
Then coach Dennis Barker’s phone rang.
Jill Geer, USA Track & Field spokesperson, explains the call: “After Friday’s semifinal round an athlete filed a protest, at which point officials reviewed the race. After review, Anderson was notified at 6:30 P.M. that she had been disqualified.”
Geer cited the offense–“jostling”–taking place within the last 300 meters of the race, adding that the individual who made the appeal was not relevant.
Anderson was unavailable for comment at the time of writing.
Barker, who watched the race, said that the issue in question happened in around the final curve. Anderson held in inside position, with the athlete coming around on her shoulder. When the athlete began to pinch in, potentially forcing Anderson off the track, Anderson put out her arm to protect herself.
“[Jostling is] the nature of the 1,500,” Barker said. “Nobody’s stride was impeded, nobody fell. The athlete just didn’t have the speed.”
Barker also said that the athlete who filed the grievance did not appear on revised start lists for the finals. Instead, Alice Schmidt, whom Barker says was not involved with any of the contact, has been added.
Schmidt, the third place finisher in the women’s trials 800-meters, was sixth in the semifinal 1,500-meter heat in 4:10.94. With Anderson’s disqualification, Schmidt advances as one of the five auto-qualifiers.
Barker immediately filed an appeal with USATF for Anderson’s reinstatement to the final; at the time of writing USATF was still in deliberation. USATF’s Geer said at 10:00 A.M. that a decision would be released within the hour.
Updates for Anderson’s story will be made as they are released.
UPDATE, 12:00 P.M.: At the time of writing, Geer said that Anderson’s case had been passed from referees to the jury of appeals, who issue the ruling.
Editor Note: at 12:29, Jury of Appeals allows Gabriele Anderson to advance to final of 1,500 meters!