Erraid Davies, whose smile after becoming the youngest Commonwealth Games medalist in history in 2014 brought the hearts of Scotland to their knees, has been ruled ineligible for the Paralympics for a second time.
Davies, who was 13 at the time and is now 15, underwent classification testing in April, which ruled her ineligible for competition under the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) banner. The testing determined that her physical impairment was no longer severe enough for her to compete in disability swimming events.
On Wednesday, on the eve of the IDM International meet in Berlin, Davies underwent a requested re-test that confirmed the April result after a bench test to study her range of motion and an in-water observation test.
Prior to being removed from the classifications, Davies was only eligible to swim in IPC races in breaststroke events, where she was classified as an SB9.
Davies has Pethes disease, a childhood disorder that causes bone death in the hips due to restricted blood flow, and spent four years in a wheel chair after being diagnosed at age 4.
According to Better Health, a program of the Australian government, “in most cases,” children recover from Perthes’ disease.
“Generally speaking, the younger the age of onset, the better the odds of full recovery, with almost all children under five years recovering without any complications,” the prognosis from Better Health reads. Having been diagnosed at age 4, Davies falls into this category.
Davies is one of many athletes who are undergoing classification testing in Berlin this week before competition begins. At least three other Paralympic medal-contenders, Ian Silverman, MacKenzie Coan, and Stephanie Millward, have been reclassified as a result of their tests.