Robles: Being Cuban cost me hurdles gold medal

August 30, 2011 - 3:35 PM
APTOPIX South Korea Athletics Worlds

Cuba's Dayron Robles, right, reacts as he wins gold in the Men's 110m Hurdles final alongside silver medalist Liu Xiang of China at the World Athletics Championships in Daegu, South Korea, Monday, Aug. 29, 2011. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

HAVANA, Cuba (AP) — Cuban athlete Dayron Robles says he wouldn't have been disqualified from the 110m hurdles in the World Championship if he came from a more powerful country.

Robles was stripped of his first-place finish in the hurdles in South Korea on Monday after judges upheld an appeal claiming he held back Chinese runner Liu Xiang.

The ruling meant the gold medal was handed to American Jason Richardson, with Liu second and British athlete Andrew Turner given bronze.

In an email sent to The Associated Press on Tuesday, Robles says "that wouldn't have happened," if he were from a country with "more power".

Robles says the setback will make him stronger mentally and insists he's focused on winning gold at the 2012 London Olympics.