Lilly King’s 200 Breast DQ Upheld After Lengthy Protest and Appeal Process

2019 FINA WORLD AQUATICS CHAMPIONSHIPS

American breaststroke star Lilly King was disqualified in the third heat of the 200 breast Thursday morning in Gwangju, and more than eight hours later, after going through the protest and appeal process, the ruling will officially stand.

King won her prelims heat, then turned at the scoreboard and reacted with shock upon seeing the DQ. According to the Italian broadcast, she walked to the officials’ table to protest, and was turned away. King was apparently not given a reason for her DQ when she asked after her race.

USA Swimming also did not know what it was for until about 30 minutes after the race, when it was told that King did a “non-simultaneous touch” on her first turn.

As of 45 minutes after the race, the results were officially “under review,” and USA Swimming lodged an official appeal shortly thereafter. Video replay is in use at this meet to review DQs if necessary. It can only to overturn calls on swimmers who were DQ’d by an official on deck, not to make a DQ, and is done immediately upon relay of the official’s call: in some cases, even before the race is over.

According to a spokesperson for USA Swimming, that protest was denied. In this situation, per the FINA rulebook, a Team USA leader could appeal to the Jury of Appeal, which was done, and the case was heard before the night session Thursday.

Here’s the process for appeal, from summarized from FINA’s general rules: the appeal goes to the entire FINA Bureau. The 20-person technical committee makes a recommendation, and any Americans on the committee can speak but not vote; that means FINA VP Dale Neuburger and Technical Committee Chair Carol Zaleski cannot vote. The jury’s decision is final.

The process was invoked in 2009 when United States open water swimmer Fran Crippen‘s finish approach in the 10k led to a disqualification and subsequent protest. That protest went to the Jury of Appeal and ultimately got the DQ overturned, awarding him the bronze medal.

King held the No. 3 time in the world heading into the meet, at 2:21.39 from May. The 22-year-old raced to a world title in the 100 breast, in which she is the world record holder and defending Olympic champion, Tuesday. American Micah Sumrall will represent the United States in the second semifinal after going 2:25.17 Thursday morning.

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HOYA13
3 years ago

Did anyone clock what her time would have been without the DQ?

Nick
3 years ago

Is it worth noting that it is physically impossible for two hands to touch at EXACTLY the same time? Thus without an explicit margin for error, the rule is inherently ambiguous and therefore subject to selective enforcement.

Jim C
Reply to  Nick
3 years ago

Not true. Since we know it is impossible to simultaneously touch with both hands, it would not be selective enforcement to disqualify everybody. If there is no such rule about a margin of error, there is a problem if better technology or random chance shows a violation which otherwise would not be noticed, when in fact there is always a violation.

FrustratedAus
3 years ago

If she was dq’d because she didn’t simultaneously touch the wall with two hands and, video evidence exists to support this then she was dq’d because she didn’t simultaneously touch the wall with two hands. It’s not rocket science and its not a conspiracy, it’s swimming.

6-Beat Kick
3 years ago

I’d like to see the video footage.

M G
3 years ago

Another example of what a joke FINA is. I hope the International Swim League succeeds and really puts them on their toes to step it up.

Jimbo
3 years ago

I thought they had to tell you 1 what the dq was for and 2 immediately after the race. Not turn you away from the table

JeffBreast88
Reply to  Jimbo
3 years ago

Maybe her demeanor at the table played a part in them not telling her immediately.

Eddie Rowe
Reply to  JeffBreast88
3 years ago

So you don’t have to follow the rules to notify the swimmer, if I as the swimmer look upset about it? Good Grief.

Widebody
Reply to  Eddie Rowe
3 years ago

There’s no rule that states you must notify the swimmer.

anonymous
Reply to  JeffBreast88
3 years ago

Watch Cody Miller vlogs and you will learn that Lily is quite the character. She has matured and is funny and positive. She just graduated from IU with a teaching degree and works with kids. I am quite positive that her demeanor was professional.

Bison
Reply to  anonymous
3 years ago

OJ Simpson also worked with kids and had a USC degree. Fantastic on TV ads….

Cdev
Reply to  Jimbo
3 years ago

Not in FINA only the coach can ask

anonymous
3 years ago

MA had a flinch but at the same time the Japanese swimmer was very slow to come down and set and delayed the start and there was some noise. That is why the starter told them to stand up and probably why he did not get DQ. Rapsys did not have a flinch. He actually was had forward movement from push of his back leg and it was right before the start. The start was not held too long as it was in MA race. I agree MA could have been DQ but when another swimmer is taking too long to come down the starter chose to bring them back up and restart.

Mike
Reply to  anonymous
3 years ago

Exactly right

Blackflag82
3 years ago

I missed the swim last night, but watching the video NBC showed, it looks like a legit call to me

Steve Schaffer
Reply to  Blackflag82
3 years ago

Which is why they use a separate video system with underwater cameras to do the video review, nor a tv feed with poor angles and clarity. Officiating is not a play along at home game.

Hold my groceries
Reply to  Blackflag82
3 years ago

She did the same in Rio 2016.

About Torrey Hart

Torrey Hart

Torrey is from Oakland, CA, and majored in media studies and American studies at Claremont McKenna College, where she swam distance freestyle for the Claremont-Mudd-Scripps team. Outside of SwimSwam, she has bylines at Sports Illustrated, Yahoo Sports, SB Nation, and The Student Life newspaper.

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