Park Tae Hwan Officially Ruled Out Of 2016 Olympic Games

As the final step of the ongoing story surrounding Korean Olympic gold medalsit Park Tae Hwan‘s doping scandal, the 26-year-old swimmer has officially been ruled out of this year’s Olympic Games in Rio, reports Yonhap News.

Park was slapped with an 18-month ban by FINA after previously testing positive for testosterone in the fall of 2014. His suspension was lifted as of March 2nd of this year. However, the Korean Olympic Committee (KOC) has an additional punitive rule in place that requires “any athlete who serves a drug-related ban is barred from national teams for three years beginning on the day the suspension ends.”

The rule was originally adopted by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 2008, but in 2011 the Court of Arbitration of Sport (CAS), which serves as the world’s top sports tribunal, determined that the regulation, nicknamed the ‘Osaka Rule’ was “a violation of the IOC’s own statute and therefore is invalid and unenforceable.”

In light of the CAS ruling, critics of the KOC argue that, as a member of the international anti-doping community, the KOC should respect international standards.  However, the KOC announced today that it would not amend the rule, which means that Park is now under a 3-year suspension, beginning on March 2nd.


Park had been training in his home nation of Korea as of December 2015, with his eye still on the 2016 Games, hoping the KOC would make changes enabling him to compete. Park won gold in the 400m freestyle and silver in the 200m free event at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He followed that performance up with two more medals, both silver, in the same events at the 2012 Games in London.

The 3-year ban would be lifted as of March 2nd, 2019 and, therefore, Park would theoretically be eligible to participate in the Tokyo 2020 Games, however, he would be 29 years of age at the time.

Park remains as the only South Korean swimmer to win an Olympic medal of any color.


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4 years ago

BRAVO!! It’s nice to see a country taking an extra-tough stance on doping. Ideally, the KOC wouldn’t have to take these additional measures. But given FINA’s ineptitude and apathy re: doping, national federations like the KOC must take matters into their own hands.

Word Up
4 years ago

Meanwhile, Sun and his other dirty teammates will participate in Rio. And Ye will miraculously recover and get her mojo back for Rio.

Query – has anyone ever compared Ye’s 100 or 200 meter freestyle with her last 100 of the 400 IM swum in London?

Reply to  Word Up
4 years ago

Please give your proofs, otherwise just refrain from slandering.

4 years ago

Double Bravo! Now let’s go test samples from 08 and bet is they are positive

About Retta Race

Retta Race

After 16 years at a Fortune 1000 financial company, long-time swimmer Retta Race decided to change lanes and pursue her sporting passion. She currently is Coach for the Northern KY Swordfish Masters, a team she started up in December 2013, while also offering private coaching. Retta is also an MBA …

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