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McKinney: It was conclusive; protest wouldn’t hold up

Women’s 4x100 meters team ran season’s best time
  • Ralph McKinney.

Guardian Sports Editor

Published: Aug 19, 2013

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MOSCOW, Russia – Before he even walked in the technical room to watch the video, Team Bahamas’ Technical Director here in Moscow, Russia, Frank ‘Pancho’ Rahming, had an idea of what the infraction was.

He said that from where he was sitting, he saw Sheniqua Ferguson step on the inside line of the first curve, of the semi-finals of the women’s 4x100 meters (m), twice.

As it turned out, it was at least three times, and with that, The Bahamas’ best remaining chance for a medal at these 14th International Association of Athletic Federations’ (IAAF) World Championships, went up in smoke.

The Bahamas’ team of Ferguson, Shaunae Miller, Cache Armbrister and Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie, in that order, was disqualified for a lane infraction as the IAAF cited rule 163.3(a).

Rahming and Team Manager Ralph McKinney were the Bahamian delegates looking to file the protest, but when they saw the video for themselves, it was determined that a protest wouldn’t “hold water”.

“We were shown a video, and the video was very conclusive. They provided the video almost instantaneously and it showed where her (Sheniqua’s) left foot touched the line at least three times, and that was it. The person at the mark didn’t flag it, but the video showed everything. It only takes once, and that’s it,” said McKinney.

The team had just run what they thought was a season’s best time of 42.73 seconds to win their semi-final heat and qualify for the final.

That time was better than the time which was ran by the United States for the silver medal in the final last night, after France, who originally crossed the finish line in second place in the final, was also disqualified. Also, with The Bahamas likely to get Anthonique Strachan for the final, hopes were high. However, it was not to be.

“We had to go inside to see the video. We went in there to appeal and see what it was, and they didn’t even accept our protest,” said McKinney. “They showed us the video, and it was conclusive. It was at least three times, so that’s it. They showed us the video, so there was no reason to go through with the protest.”

With that, and the ensuing men’s 4x100m relay team exit, The Bahamas saw its streak of at least one medal at every world championships since 1995 – a string of nine straight championships – come to an end.

Also, it was the second straight year in which the women’s sprint relay team barely fell short of advancing to the final of a major global meet. At last year’s London Olympic Games, the team finished ninth overall, just missing out on the final, and this year, they had ran a time fast enough to advance, but had to deal with a disqualification.


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