One of the United States’ most promising athletes will have to skip the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
USA Sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson, 21, has tested positive for a “prohibited substance,” which disqualifies her performance at the U.S. Olympic Trials, according to media reports. If the story is true, the disqualification would make her ineligible to participate in the Olympic Games. However, one report claims Richardson has been suspended for 30 days due to a marijuana violation — which would make her miss the 100-meter event, but not the 4×100 meter relay.
Richardson has reportedly pulled out of Sunday’s Diamond League meeting in Stockholm, where she was scheduled to run 200 meters. On Thursday, the sprinter tweeted just three words: “I am human.”
Sha’Carri told NBC in an interview, “I want to take responsibility for my actions. I know what I did. I know what I’m supposed to do and am allowed not to do, and I still made that decision. I’m not making an excuse. I’m not looking for any empathy in my case.”
After Richardson’s won the 100m final at the U.S. Olympic Trials in 10.86, qualifying for the Tokyo Games, she talked to a reporter on how blessed she was to have made it this far in her journey with the help of her grandmother, coach, family and friends. However, in all of her excitement, she mentioned how hard it was for her to still come out in compete, after having finding out the recent passing of her biological, a week before her meet.
“That sent me in a state of mind, in a state of emotional panic, if anything,” she said. “During all that, I still, even though I’m here, I still have to go out and put on a performance for my dream.”
Sha’Carri admitted to NBC on Friday that she used marijuana in Oregon, a state in which the substance is legal, after the death of her biological mother.
“I would like to say to my fans and my family and my sponsorship, to the haters, too, I apologize,” she said. “As much as I’m disappointed, I know that when I step on that track, I don’t represent myself, I represent a community that has shown me great support, great love.”
Listen to full interview below: