Mexican national record-holder Fernanda Gonzalez says she was threatened with expulsion from the Pan American Games for not wearing Mexico’s sponsored competition suit.
Gonzalez says she was detained in the Pan Am Games village an hour before she was slated to swim the A final of the 200 backstroke, and that officials from the Mexican Olympic Committee threatened to send her immediately back to Mexico if she didn’t wear the recommended suit.
Laaficion.com reports on Gonzalez’s claim that four officials kept her in a room and told her they would take away her accreditation and not allow her to compete in the Games in Toronto.
You can see an interview with Gonzalez on the MasNatacion.com Facebook page here, in its original Spanish. Gonzalez appears near tears at several points, and notes that she hopes to use the Pan Am Games to qualify for the Olympics.
It’s still unclear which brand of suit the Mexican Olympic Committee wanted Gonzalez to wear and which brand she wore before getting in trouble with the Mexican officials. She is wearing an Arena suit in the video interview above.
Gonzalez told another Spanish news organization, Terra, that the suit the officials wanted her to wear was not her size and didn’t fit her right. With an Olympic bid on the line, Gonzalez decided against wearing the suit that she says didn’t fit.
She told Terra that she would “burn” the recommended suit and only wear a suit that fit her for the rest of competition.
After the suit incident, Gonzalez competed in the championship final of the 200 back, gaining two and a half seconds from her prelims time and taking 8th overall. Gonzalez was about six seconds off her own national record in the event.