It seems like it was just yesterday that stylish track superstar Sha’Carri Richardson burst onto the scene, broke records, and positioned herself as the next Flo-Jo and in just two week’s time, she’s gained the love, support, and protection of Black America – especially during her time of grief.
Yesterday it was reported that Richardson tested positive for THC, the main constituent of marijuana, which is prohibited in Olympic competitions. The positive test was confirmed from a sample that was collected at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials on June 19 – the day of Richardson’s dominant win that earned her a spot on her first-ever Olympic team. However, because of the positive test, the USADA revealed in the statement that Richardson’s results on June 19, including her Olympic qualifying results, have been disqualified.
In an interview with the Today show on Friday morning, Richardson admitted to using marijuana after learning the news of her mother’s untimely passing, accepting a one-month suspension from Track & Field and disqualification from the Olympics in the process. “As much as I’m disappointed, I know that when I step on that track I don’t just represent myself. I represent a community that has shown me great support, great love,” she explained. “I apologize for the fact that I didn’t know how to control my emotions, or deal with my emotions, during that time.”
The news came as a shock to supporters of the 21-year-old as many were looking forward to seeing someone who looked like them, a Black girl with a long weave and long nails, dominate Track & Field at the Olympics. While some offered their prayers and support, like the below tweet.
Others shared their words of empathy, putting themselves in the shoes of a 21-year-old.
Black women weren’t the only ones standing by the athlete amid the unfortunate news. Nike, the brand that sponsors Richardson, shared their words of encouragement and support to the track runner as well. “We appreciate Sha’Carri’s honesty and accountability and will continue to support her through this time,” the brand said.
USA Track & Field also shared a statement of support, writing “Sha’Carri Richardson’s situation is incredibly unfortunate and devastating for everyone involved. Athlete health and well-being continue to be one of USATF’s most critical priorities and we will work with Sha’Carri to ensure she has ample resources to overcome any mental health challenges now and in the future.”
And as for Sha’Carri, right now she’s focusing on healing herself. “I’m just putting all of my energy into dealing with what I need to deal with to heal myself,” she told Today. “If I’m allowed to receive that blessing, then I’m grateful for it, but if not, right now I’m just going to focus on myself.”
Nike Stands By Sha’Carri Richardson After One-Month Suspension And Failed Drug Test was originally published on hellobeautiful.com