The Cork sprinter finished fourth in the 60m hurdles final in Gothenburg back in March, but was subsequently promoted to the rostrum when Turkey’s gold medal winner Nevin Yanit tested positive for banned substances.
News of Yanit’s failed doping test broke in mid-August and though official records show O’Rourke in third place, the bronze medal has yet to arrive.
“It is massively frustrating and there is nothing I can do about it,” sighed O’Rourke.
“It is caught up in a load of legal stuff because the IAAF are looking to increase Yanit’s ban for her positive testing. The process is almost stalled until that is sorted. It is such a slow process. On paper I am considered the bronze medallist, but I don’t have the medal in my possession.
“I have so little to do with it because this is a case between the IAAF and Yanit. They have kept me informed and that has been quite nice, but it is frustrating.
“It is a very long process and I didn’t expect that when the news first broke. I thought it would simply be a matter of months, I didn’t know the process would be as drawn out. I guess that’s just the way it is. I suppose the one plus is the bump up to third will help my funding for next year.”
Yanit also won the European outdoor 100 metres hurdles last summer, defending the title annexed in Barcelona in 2010, when she edged O’Rourke into silver and the Irish record holder said doubts will forever remain on the legitimacy of that result.
“It is frustrating. I don’t mind being beaten by people when they are better than me. I came second at the European outdoors in 2006 to Susanne Kallur and Susanne was absolutely better than me on that day. I did everything I could to beat her and she still nipped me and I have so much respect for that.
“When there is a question mark over a performance that beat me you just don’t have that level of respect for the person. There is nothing I can do now. I ran so well that day in Barcelona. I did everything I could. It is what it is. I would love if they could go back, but I don’t think they will.”
O’Rourke’s 2013 outdoor season was derailed by a recurring Achilles injury and having gone under the knife during the summer, the 32-year old is delighted to finally be back on the treadmill.
“My recovery is going really well. The past three weeks I have turned a corner. I am jogging outside and I am doing all my sessions on an AlterG treadmill which is weird, but really effective. With the AlterG you are in a pair of shorts and there is air all around you so it reduces your body weight, putting less pressure on the foot. I started using it at 35% body weight and now I am at 90%. It makes it easier to adapt back into training. I have one in Dublin in the Institute of Sport and one in the Mardyke so I am quite spoilt really.
“Everything has gone exactly how we hoped. I would love to know exactly when I’ll be back racing, but they just say we’ll be ready for outdoors. Once we did the surgery I knew World indoors was never in the picture. When you know that, that’s fine and I accepted that. Everything is geared towards the outdoor season and the European championships in Zurich is the main goal.”