The ad hoc Division of the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has dismissed the applications filed by the Italian Olympic Committee and the Spanish Olympic Committee against two decisions of the International Jury of the International Sailing Federation related to the gold medal race of the 49er event at Qingdao.
A panel of CAS arbitrators heard representations from the parties as well as from representatives of the Danish NOC as an interested party. Having deliberated, the CAS arbitrators announced that both applications were dismissed and that the decisions rendered by the ISAF International Jury concerning the event were confirmed.
This procedure followed an incident which occurred before the gold medal race in the 49er class event on August 17th, 2008. Shortly before the start of the race the Danish team was sailing towards the start line when their mast broke. The Danish team then decided to use the boat of another team, Croatia, which had not qualified for the medal race. The Danish team finished 7th in the race and ranked first in the overall ranking of the event. The Spanish team, which obtained the silver medal and the Italian team which was ranked 4th, as well as the Race Committee, filed various protests which were all rejected by the ISAF International Jury. The two National Olympic Committees then requested the CAS to annul the ISAF International Jury decisions, to declare that the Danish team was not entitled to take part in the gold medal race, to disqualify the Danish team and to re-allocate the Olympic medals to the Spanish team, gold medal, the German team, silver medal, and the Italian team the bronze medal. However, the Court has now ruled and the Danes have retained their gold medal with Spain receiving silver and Germany bronze.