Sha’Carri Richardson FAILS drug test and says ‘I am human’ as America’s fastest woman banned from Tokyo Olympics 100m
AMERICA'S fastest woman Sha'Carri Richardson has been banned from competing at the Tokyo Olympics after testing positive for cannabis.
The 100-metre sprinter was set to lead Team USA into the Games later this month.
But after failing her drugs test at the Olympic trials, Richardson has been given a month-long suspension.
Her ban will expire AFTER the women's 100m, but before the relays – with Team USA yet to reveal if she will take part.
On her ban, Richardson said: “I apologise for the fact that I didn't know how to control my emotions or deal with my emotions during that time.
“We all have our different struggles and different things we deal with but I put on a face to hide my pain.
“Who am I to tell you how to cope? Who am I to tell you you're wrong for hurting?”
Richardson added: “If I’m allowed the blessing of competing, I am grateful but this is just one Games.
“This incident was about marijuana, not steroids. After my sanction is up I'll be back and able to compete.”
Richardson, 21, ran 100 metres in 10.86 seconds in Oregon last month.
The run, however, has been provisionally scrubbed from the record books.
Her best of 10.72sec is the second-fastest in the world this year behind Beijing and London gold medallist Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce.
Richardson is yet to officially comment on the matter, but tweeted Thursday: "I am human."
Cannabis was banned by WADA as of January 1 this year and could carry a ban of up to four years.
The suspension can be reduced to just three months, if athletes can prove that their drug use didn't enhance their performance.
But even this reduced ban would rule Richardson out of the Tokyo Games.
The Jamaica Gleaner broke the story and asked Richardson's agent for comment.
But the request was not answered.
After the trials in Oregon, Richardson revealed that her mother had died the previous week.
She told ESPN at the time: "My family has kept me grounded.
"This year has been crazy for me. Going from just last week, losing my biological mother, and I'm still here.
"Last week, finding out my biological mother passed away and still choosing to pursue my dreams, still coming out here, still here to make the family that I do still have on this earth proud.
"I'm highly grateful for them. Without them, there would be no me. Without my grandmother, there would be no Sha'Carri Richardson. My family is my everything, my everything until the day I'm done."
Richardson ran a time of 10.72 seconds back in April, making her the fastest American woman in ten years – and the sixth fastest ever.
She has run five sub-11 second sprints this year.
Richardson was due to compete in the 200m event at the Stockholm Diamond League but was not on the entry list for the race.
She is now set to be replaced by Jenna Prandini, who came fourth in trials last month.
Richardson’s athleticism has seen fans compare her to the legendary Florence “Flo Jo” Griffith Joyner.
Flo-Jo won gold medals in the 100m, 200m, and relay race at the 1988 Seoul Olympics that were held in South Korea.
She died in her sleep after suffering an epileptic seizure in September 1998.
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