At the 2007 World Championships in Osaka, Japan, American Kara Goucher ran to a third-place finish in the 10,000m. In 2017, following a doping investigation of silver medallist Elvan Abeylegesse, Goucher was bumped up to second place. Three years later, Goucher has finally received the silver medal she should have won in Osaka.
Complete surprise package today. 12.5 years after Osaka I received my silver medal. Thank you @usatf for the thoughtful and beautiful flowers. And thank you to my husband, family, and friends who were able to tune in with zoom and watch me “receive” it. Heart full tonight. ❤️🥈 pic.twitter.com/zT2ymRwFJr
— Kara Goucher (@karagoucher) March 21, 2020
In 2015, an anti-doping test sample from Abeylegesse from those 2007 championships tested positive for the banned steroid stanozolol. It took two more years, but in 2017, she was stripped of her results from 2007 to 2009.
With Abeylegesse removed from the overall standings, Goucher replaced her in the silver medal position and Great Britain’s Jo Pavey, who originally finished fourth, moved up to bronze. Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia won the race in 2007, and she remains ahead of Goucher and Pavey.
Goucher took to Twitter to announce that she had received a “surprise package.” She celebrated with her husband and son at home, and other family and friends video-called in for the impromptu medal ceremony.
This was the lone world championship medal on Goucher’s resume, and she finally has the hardware to match the record books. Following her medal in 2007, she went on to compete in two Olympics, finishing ninth in the 10,000m in Beijing in 2008 and 10th at the London 2012 marathon.