NEWS

De Lima marathon gold plea

Brazilian sports officials have appealed to the world’s highest sports court for runner Vanderlei de Lima, who lost his lead in the Athens 2004 marathon after being attacked by a deranged spectator, to be awarded a consolation gold medal. The Lausanne-based Court of Arbitration of Sport said yesterday it had received an appeal from the Brazilian Olympic Committee (COB) requesting that a second gold should be issued for de Lima – who suffered no injury in the attack but lost crucial ground 6 kilometers (nearly 4 miles) from the end and finished the race third. COB stressed that the marathon winner – Stefano Baldini of Italy, who broke Briton Bill Adcock’s 35-year record for the notoriously tough Athens course – should keep his gold medal. «We’re defending the interests of Brazilian sport and of Vanderlei himself,» COB President Carlos Arthur Nuzman said. A defrocked Irish priest with a history of sports events disruptions, Cornelius Horan, 57, received a 12-month suspended sentence for the attack, which he carried out in a short kilt and a green beret.