After failing to qualify for the 200m final on Sunday to end her hopes of an individual medal at the U.S. Track and Field Outdoor Championships, sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson made a statement. to reporters asking for more respect in the media coverage.
“I come to speak, not just on my behalf, but on behalf of all athletes, that when you conduct interviews, you have to respect athletes more,” Richardson said. “You have to understand whether they come by winning, or they lose, whichever the case may be. Athletes deserve a lot more respect than if you just come and throw cameras in their faces.
“Understand how an athlete works and then ask your questions. Then be more understanding that they are still human regardless of the fact that you are just trying to put something in an article to make a dollar. Thank you. “
Richardson, 22, walked out of the mixed-zone interview area where reporters had gathered and did not answer questions after failing to make it to the US team for next month’s world championships. Richardson was advanced on Saturday to the semifinals, although she finished with the 10th fastest time (22.69) from four heats. In her semifinal on Sunday, Richardson finished fifth in 22.47.
Kentucky’s Abby Steiner won the 200 final in 21.77 and set the world’s fastest time this year. Steiner chased Tamara Clark and Jenna Prandini in the last 50 meters and Clark finished in a personal best of 21.92. Prandini finished third in 22.01.
The 200 ended a rough American encounter for Richardson, who bombed out of the 100-meter competition, her signature event, already after the first round on Thursday evening.
It was quite a turnaround for Richardson at the USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships after a successful showing at the inaugural NYC Grand Prix earlier in June, where Richardson won the 200 in 22.38 seconds and finished second in the 100 in 10.85 , what was her season-best heat.
Richardson had qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in the 100 but did not compete after testing positive for marijuana. She was given a 30-day suspension that kept her out of the Tokyo event, and she was also kept out of the US team as part of the relay pool, although her suspension would be complete by the time of the 4×100 relay.
Contributors: Lindsay Schnell, Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Sha’Carri Richardson asks for respect after failing 200 final