Late Friday night news spread that Gabriele Anderson, who runs for Brooks/Team USA Minnesota, had been disqualified from Sunday’s 1500m final at the Olympic Trials due to contacting and subsequently impeding Amy Mortimer in the semi-final heat. Anderson finished 2nd in the heat to Shannon Rowbury, while Mortimer finished 7th, and did not move onto Sunday’s final.
Alice Schmidt was the immediate beneficiary of the disqualification, moving from 6th to 5th and gaining automatic qualification to the final.
In various replays, contact appeared to be largely incidental as Mortimer moved into Anderson’s path and Anderson seemed to fight for the space she occupied. The idea of Anderson having impeded Mortimer seemed to lack substance, but nevertheless Anderson was disqualified and only found out after her coach told her. It is unclear who filed the protest as of right now.
Anderson (@GabrieleAnde) spent her time on Saturday protesting her cause, taking to Twitter to gather support. The hashtag #reinstategabe took off and by about 3:30pm EST, she tweeted that she had received notice that she would be reinstated to Sunday’s final and the race would be contested with 13 runners.
Anderson has already faced a challenging road just to get here, having successfully battled cancer on two occasions in the past two years. You can read an interview from Competitor Magazine here.