Erik Kynard receives gold medal at 2012 Olympics after Russia scandal
As early as 2012, Kynard jumped in the high jump to a height of 2.33 meters, but was surpassed by the Russian Ivan Ukhov with a height of 2.38 meters.
Years later, Ukhov was disqualified for violating the Olympic doping rules and suspended from the Court of Arbitration for Sports for four years in 2019. Ukhov went back to the same court for an appeal last year but was unable to overturn the sentence. Kynard was then upgraded to a gold medal, while the three bronze medalists, Derek Drouin from Canada, Robbie Grabarz from Great Britain and Mutaz Essa Barshim from Qatar received silver medals.
“We’re delighted for Erik that the IOC finally approved the re-award of medals for the men’s high jump at the 2012 London Olympics, which resulted in Erik being awarded the gold medal,” said the Director of Athletics and Cross Country Rovelto cliff. “We always saw Erik’s performance in London when he won silver, not that he lost the gold. He played very well in the Olympic final.”
The decision has been a long time coming for Kynard, who argues that he has earned a gold medal since Ukhov was first accused of fraud. Kynard is one of the top Olympians in K-State Athletics history, and his legend will only grow after his silver medal is upgraded to gold.
“It is regrettable that Erik and the three athletes who originally had the same points as well as the fourth, who will now receive the bronze medal, did not get the opportunity to celebrate their placements.” said Rovelto. “They have been denied their rightful recognition and the outward reward their achievements deserved. Personally, I will continue to appreciate the inner feelings that result from successfully completing the process Erik and I began in 2009 when Erik began his studies at Kansas State. What? It makes me really proud to know that Erik will have the same to take away. “
The IOC also re-awarded the bronze medal in the women’s high jump for a Russian female athlete. Svetlana Shkolina was disqualified for breaking the rules and the Spaniard Ruth Beitia has now won bronze.
“This is wonderful news for both Erik and USA Track & Field, who believe in and participate in a strong global anti-doping program,” said USA Track and Field CEO Max Siegel. “He was the NCAA men’s high jump champion in Kansas State in 2011 and 2012, a year he began a 5-year run that put him in the top 10 in the world high jump. Erik, not only a great athlete, but a leader in the sport, is now rightly 2012 Olympic champion. “
Similarly in wrestling, Tervel Dlagnev from the United States will move up to the 2012 Olympic 120kg freestyle bronze. That move was also expected after the original 2019 gold and silver medalists were eliminated.
For the latest on K-State Track and Field, follow @kstatesports and @KStateTFXC on Twitter or Kansas State Track & Field / Cross Country on Facebook.