Three female Chinese weightlifters stripped of Olympic golds


Three female Chinese weightlifters who won gold in the 2008 Beijing Olympics have been stripped of their medals after testing positive for banned substances.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Thursday revealed that Cao Lei, Chen Xiexia and Liu Chunhong are among eight athletes to be sanctioned following reanalysis of samples taken at the Games nine years ago.

All three have have been disqualified from the Olympics on home soil after GHRP-2 and metabolite showed up when re-testing was carried out.

Cao won the -75kg weightlifting event, with Chen striking gold in the 48kg category and Liu topping the podium in the 69kg competition.

Nadzeya Ostapchuk of Belarus must hand over the shot put bronze she won in the same Games after testing positive for dehydrochlormethyltestosterone (turinabol) and tamoxifen.

Hammer thrower Darya Pchelnik, also of Belarus, has also been disqualified along with Turkish weightlifter Sibel Simsek.

Azerbaijani weightlifter Intigam Zairov and Armenian Norayr Vardanyan were the other two athletes to be sanctioned by the IOC.