Thursday, August 23, 2012

Justin Gatlin's illness forces him out of track season

By Houston Mitchell

Organizers of the Lausanne Diamond League meeting say U.S. sprinter Justin Gatlin will miss the rest of the season due to an illness. Earlier this week, Gatlin went to an Austrian hospital because of a fever and stomach pains.

Gatlin, the 100-meter bronze medalist at the London Olympics and a member of the U.S.' silver-winning 400-meter relay team, was slated to run in the Athletissima meet in Switzerland on Thursday.

In a statement, Athletissima organizers said “his situation has not improved. Justin Gatlin has taken the decision to return to the USA, withdrawing from the meeting in Lausanne as well as ending his season.”

Usain Bolt, the fastest man in the world, is also scheduled to compete in Switzerland. That alone is enough to give any competitor stomach pains.

In all, Gatlin has won five Olympic medals, including gold in the men's 100 in the 2004 Games in Athens.