Runner Reinstated After Expulsion for Not Trying
Taoufik Makhloufi to race in 1,500m final
Algerian distance runner Taoufik Makhloufi was expelled from the Games for failing to provide a “bona fide effort” after only running 200 meters of his 800m semifinal heat on Monday. He has since been reinstated after medical evidence was provided for his failure to complete the race. Makhloufi qualified for both the 800m and 1,500m competitions, but on Sunday he notched the fastest qualifying time in the 1,500m semifinals, making him one of the favorites for gold in that event. The Algerian team failed to remove Makhloufi from the 800m semifinal by Sunday’s deadline, so he was forced to run the race. After falling behind early, Makhloufi stopped running and walked off the track in what appeared to be an attempt to conserve energy for the event in which he could actually win gold. After the race, the International Association of Athletics Federations suspended Makhloufi for the rest of the Olympics for unsporting behavior. The Algeria team then argued that Makhloufi was suffering from a knee injury, and after an Olympic medical official examined Makhloufi and provided evidence, the IAAF reversed its decision late Monday. The 1,500m is schedule to take place Tuesday afternoon.
Via The Guardian