Park Tae-Hwan To Compete At Korean Nationals

Four-time Olympic medalist Park Tae-Hwan has recently announced he will compete at the upcoming Korean National Championships, per the Korea Herald.

Park was served an 18-month suspension for doping after testing positive for testosterone in 2014. His suspension expired in March of this year. Park was hit with the ban in March of 2015, but the suspension began retroactively in September 2014 as that’s when his positive sample was collected.

The meet will serve as a second meet for Koreans to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games, however Park is ineligible to qualify. The Korean Olympic Committee has a rule in place that swimmers who have served doping suspensions cannot represent their country for 3 years after the ban expires, leaving Park out of international competition until March of 2019 unless there are amendments made to the rule at some point.

Park has won two medals at each of the past two Olympics, collecting a gold in the 400 freestyle and a silver in the 200 freestyle in 2008, and adding two more silvers in the same events in 2012. He is the only South Korean swimmer in history to win an Olympic medal.

Park will compete in the 100, 200, 400 and 1500 freestyle events beginning in a week.



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interested swimmer
6 years ago

Will SwimSwam be covering the Korean Nationals?

Reply to  interested swimmer
6 years ago

interested swimmer – we will be, though we’ll be focusing on finals. Expect the first recaps tomorrow morning U.S. time.

6 years ago

It should just be one and done. Simple.

6 years ago

The fact is that there’s no news here. Park is allowed to compete at Korean Nat. Champs and isn’t afoul of any FINA/WADA/Korean rules because he’s served his time. The lingering question still unknown remains …..Will South Korean Olympic Committee blink and let Park compete in Brazil? Perhaps I’m naive but I’m confident they won’t. The Russian federation let us all down last week amending their Olympic qualifying rules paving a way for Efimova to be named after the fact but I don’t think the South Koreans are going to bend. We’ll see.

6 years ago

Lance tested clean too.

6 years ago

I daresay Lin Zhang and Hao Yun are lucky to have never tested positive anyway. …

6 years ago

TOM from Chicago:
Stop with hyperbole:

No crime was committed by Park Tae Hwan.

He was tested for drugs in 2008 and 2012 and was clean. So I will not be shedding tears for Jean Basson.

6 years ago

I agree with Tom… having swam with 2 ladies who got pushed down in the results by Michelle Smith. It is not victimless Marianne and Joanne deserved better.

Tom from Chicago
6 years ago

Have you heard of Jean Basson?

Jean Basson is a swimmer from South Africa who came in 4th in the 200 free at the 2008 Olympics. Peter VanDerKaay came in 4th in the 400 free. Both men were behind Park Tae Hwan. Zhang Lin is not an Olympic Champion because of Park Tae Hwan. Ryan Lochte got 4th in the 2012 200 Free behind Hwan. Hao Yun came in 4th in the 2012 400M free behind Hwan.

In 2014, Park Tae Hwan tested positive for Testosterone. FINA only issued an 18-month suspension, but luckily Korea has made him ineligible for Rio.

Doping is not a victimless crime. How many nameless Korean swimmers has Hwan displaced from Korean Olympic and World… Read more »

Reply to  Tom from Chicago
6 years ago

Amen Tom From Chicago!!!!! Those other swimmers were ROBBED,

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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