Dominique Dawes sides with Olympic committee on Sha'Carri Richardson suspension: 'Rules are rules'

·2 min read

Three-time Olympic gold medalist Dominique Dawes appeared Wednesday on Cuomo Prime Time and spoke about American sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson, who was suspended from the Summer Olympics after testing positive for marijuana. Richardson’s suspension has garnered widespread backlash, because marijuana is legal in several states and is not a performance-enhancing drug. But Dawes agrees with the suspension.

“Well, Chris [Cuomo], like you said, rules are rules. And you’re speaking to an Olympic gymnast, and we are very particular and we are rule followers for most cases.” Dawes said, later adding “I do think, you know, because it is a current rule, they need to follow the rule, and unfortunately that does mean that Richardson will not be competing in these Olympic games.”

Dawes alluded to her own Olympic experience in explaining why she’s a stickler for the rules.

“My last Olympic games, there were rules out with regards to the age that an athlete had to be,” Dawes said. “However, Chinese gymnasts were underage, and that truly affected myself and my teammates from getting on the podium and getting a bronze medal during the 2000 Olympic games. So I’m a rule-follower.”

Following the positive test, Richardson admitted to ingesting marijuana after her mother died, and said of the suspension, “I understand the situation that’s going on. So, I’m accepting of it, and I just know what I have to do moving forward in my career.”

Dawes respects Richardson’s handling of the difficult situation.

“I really do respect Sha’Carri Richardson for coming out and admitting her fault,” Dawes said, “and really saying she’s human, that she made a mistake.”

Richardson officially became the fastest track and field female athlete in the United States after posting a 10.86-second time in the 100-meter race at the Olympic trials last month.

Cuomo Prime Time airs weeknights at 9 p.m. on CNN.

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