The Jamaican 200m sprinter Andrew Hudson was left with shards of glass in his eye after a collision between two golf buggies at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest.
Hudson needed nearly 20 minutes of medical treatment after the crash, which delayed the first of the three semi-finals by 24 minutes, and the athlete was seen clearly in distress.
Eventually he decided to run, despite having blurry vision, but finished fifth in his race, with only the first two automatically qualifying, plus two fastest losers from each of the three semi-finals. However, officials granted him a spot in the final.
“I went back to medical, the doctor said I had some shards of glass in my eye,” said Hudson, who was still squinting as he spoke to reporters. “He tried to flush out as best as possible. World Athletics asked me if I was going to run or not. It was kind of run or lose my spot. I worked so hard to be here, so I thought I would at least try. And I tried.”
The shunt was also severe enough to knock one of the drivers out of a buggy and it delayed the start of the first of three heats by 24 minutes. The incident, which occurred as the athletes were being brought from the warm-up track to the stadium, led World Athletics to push the second semi-final ahead of the first to allow athletes to recover.
Asked about the race, Hudson added: “I don’t know. There was so much going on. My eye was a blur. The race was a blur. I appreciate the athletes waiting and agreeing to take our heat later on in the competition. My eye is still pretty blurry.”
US sprinter Noah Lyles, who won the 100m final on Sunday, was also involved in the crash but was unaffected and qualified fastest in 19.75.
A statement from the Budapest organising committee said: “The 200m heats reorder was due to the collision of two golf carts. One athlete and a volunteer were assessed and the athlete cleared to participate. The volunteer is also fine.
“The Local Organising Committee is investigating the incident and reviewing the transport procedures.”