Speed Reads

thin ice

2022 Olympics: Tara Lipinski, Sha'Carri Richardson knock decision to let Kamila Valieva skate despite drug scandal

Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva was in fact able to compete in the women's short program on Tuesday after being cleared by the Court of Aribitration for Sport in the wake of a delayed positive doping test — but not without some criticism. 

In one instance, former U.S. Olympians Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir expressed their disappointment with the decision during NBC's live broadcast of the Games Tuesday morning, The Washington Post reports.

"We have to remind ourselves that she is just 15 years old, a minor, and I know more than anyone what it's like to compete at an Olympic Games at 15 years old," Lipinski said on-air. "But a positive [drug] test is a positive test. She cannot skate."

"The Olympics were everything that I ever dreamed about, everything that kept me going on the day-to-day," Weir added, per the Post, "and to have that experience and that feeling … diminished because of a positive drug test on one of your competitors when everyone else adheres to the rules … it's a slap in the face to every other skater."

"[I]t's putting a permanent scar on our sport," Lipinski went on.

And in a separate instance, sprinter Sha'Carri Richardson — who was forced to sit out the Toyko Summer Games due to a positive marijuana test — wondered aloud on Monday why her situation was treated differently than Valieva's. 

Richardson previously said she had smoked marijuana during the Olympic trials to cope with the death of her biological mother.

Valieva did not speak with reporters following her time on the ice on Tuesday, notes the Post.