Sha’Carri Richardson has been everywhere in the news over the past few weeks for her excellence on the track. That changed this week when the 21-year-old sprinter tested positive for THC — a chemical in marijuana — and has been suspended from the Olympic team. This news comes just after Richardson secured her spot on the team after running at a record-setting speed and being dubbed “America’s fastest women” at the Track and Field Olympic Trials last week.
“I apologize,” Richardson said on NBC’s “Today” show. “As much as I’m disappointed I know that when I step on the track I represent not only myself, I represent a community that has shown great support, great love … I apologize for the fact that I didn’t know how to control my emotions or deal with my emotions during that time.”
The United States Anti-Doping Agency on Friday announced that Richardson has accepted a one-month suspension and her results from the U.S. Olympic trials have been “disqualified, and she forfeits any medals, points, and prizes,” USADA said in a statement.
It was a punishment that pissed off Patrick Mahomes.
“This is so trash man… just let her run!”
Richardson tested positive at the Olympic trials last month where she established herself as a gold-medal contender by winning the 100 meters in 10.86 seconds.
“We all have our different struggles, we all have our different things we deal with, but to put on a face and have to go out in front of the world and put on a face and hide my pain,” Richardson said. “Who are you? Who am I to tell you how to cope when you’re dealing with a pain or you’re dealing with a struggle that you’ve never experienced before or that you never thought you’d have to deal with. Who am I to tell you how to cope? Who am I to tell you you’re wrong for hurting?”
The Texan was aiming to become the first American woman to win the Olympic 100-meter title since Gail Devers in 1996.
“If I’m allowed to receive that blessing [compete in Tokyo] then I’m grateful for it,” Richardson said. “But if not, right now I’m just going to focus on myself.”
Richardson said this isn’t the end of her Olympic dreams.
“This is just one Games. I’m 21, I’m very young. … I have plenty of Games left in me to compete in and I have plenty of talent that backs me up, because everything I do comes from me naturally. No steroid, no anything,” she said. “This incident was about marijuana, so after my sanction is up I’ll be back and able to compete, and every single time I step on the track I’ll be ready for whatever anti-doping agency to come and get what it is that they need.”