Adams 'overwhelmed' by gold
Tue, 14 Aug 2012 4:15a.m.
By Alastair Bull
Valerie Adams was tearful when she learned she'd won gold in the London 2012 Olympic women's shot put after the winner was exposed as a drugs cheat.
Nadzeya Ostapchuk of Belarus beat Adams on the park with a best throw of 21.36m, more than half a metre above Adams' best on the night.
But urine samples from the day before the event and immediately after it tested positive to the anabolic agent metenolone and she has been stripped of her title.
Adams was overcome when told the news by New Zealand Olympics chef de mission Dave Currie about 11.30am UK time on Monday.
"I asked Dave if the news was for real, and then just burst into tears. I was overwhelmed that I'd won gold," she said.
"I'm honoured and humbled for the support I've received from New Zealand and would like to thank the country.
"It is also encouraging for those athletes, like myself who are proud to compete cleanly, that the system works and doping cheats are caught."
Currie says there were rumours about Ostapchuk after her distances improved sharply before and during the Olympics; when asked about Ostapchuk's throws immediately after the competition, Adams' coach, Jean-Pierre Egger, pointedly said he didn't want to comment.
"At that stage you've got to have faith in the process, that it will work. It did work, and we're delighted with that," Currie said.
"It's sad that Val didn't have the opportunity to stand on the dias at the time, but it's just fantastic."
He said the gold medal was in Belarus and it could take months before Adams received it.
Ostapchuk was the 12th athlete at the Olympics to be excluded following doping tests, but the first to lose a medal.
The decision means New Zealand moves up to 15th on the Olympic medal table with a total of six golds, two silvers and five bronzes.
The Belarussian, the 2005 world champion, finished fourth at the Athens Olympics in 2004 and took bronze in Beijing four years ago.
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14/08/2012 1:53:40 p.m.
Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant! Now all we need is athletics NZ plus Auckland Airport to lay on a reception we can all celebrate, flag-raising, anthem and all. How about the big flag on George Bolt drive roundabout ?
14/08/2012 11:18:45 a.m.
AMAZING!!!! You are the best Valerie a pure gold champion! Even when you got the silver you were the champ for NZ! All that hard work pay off! Well done lady! NZ SOLID GOLD!!!!
There's no space for cheaters in life! Bad karma for the belorussia chick! Job well done Val, and all the best for your future!!!
14/08/2012 11:17:58 a.m.
Why couldnt this drug test have been done quicker i.e as soon as possible To give Valerie a chance to go on the podium, i feel real sorry for the chinese athlete who now has bronze after coming 4th she didnt get the experience of being on the podium. Drug cheats should be banned for life
14/08/2012 11:13:42 a.m.
Nitin Subhedar wrote:
Three cheers for Valerie. Drug tests should be made more stringent and the results should be prompt in coming at all sporting events. Poor Valerie. To have gone through all this. We are all proud of you Valerie.
14/08/2012 10:57:27 a.m.
Fantastic news well done valerie!! You were always our golden girl and now you have the medal to prove it
14/08/2012 10:53:51 a.m.
Claire Rickerby wrote:
Fantastic, awesome news. Thrilled for Valerie.
Always knew she was the best. Yahoo. 8 - )
14/08/2012 10:53:07 a.m.
14/08/2012 10:47:29 a.m.
Build-up. Disgrace to my country
14/08/2012 10:46:26 a.m.
Fantastic news Valerie. All of your GOOD HONEST hard work and efforts have paid off. It goes to show Ostapchuk feared you so much that she became desperate and saw cheating as the only way of winning. The Olympic Committee should honour you with your own GOLD MEDAL. Ostapchuks medal is tainted as far as I'm concerned.
14/08/2012 10:33:31 a.m.
Bruce H wrote:
It would be really nice to hold a special medal ceremony just for Valerie, where we play the national anthem just for her in honour for her awesomeness!
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