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Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue: ‘We have our own empty medal box waiting in our bedroom,’ say American ice dancers


Speaking to CNN’s Coy Wire, Hubbell said they were “disappointed” to be told at the last minute on February 8 that the medal ceremony would be delayed. The United States finished second behind the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC).

“We were really looking forward to sharing this Olympic moment together. It’s an incredibly difficult situation for everyone involved, but I certainly don’t think it’s fair to any of the medal-winning athletes that we have to give up this Olympic moment. .. it’s hard to go home empty-handed,” Hubbell said.

Donohue added that he hoped the situation would be resolved “as soon as possible”, both for the athletes and for the integrity of the sport.

“We have a whole team of athletes who have finished competing and are staring at an empty box and the unknown of the future and missing that Olympic moment,” Donohue said.

On Thursday, Valieva finished fourth in the women’s individual skating competition while teammates Anna Shcherbakova and Alexandra Trusova won gold and silver respectively. Japan’s Kaori Sakamoto won bronze.

A week of immense pressure seemed to weigh heavily on young Valieva’s shoulders, as she fell several times during her individual routine.

Speaking of 15-year-old Valieva, Donohue said it was awful that everything she had done so far was being called into question following her ongoing doping case.

“At the center of it all is a 15 year old girl who is having everything she has worked for this year stolen, everything she has done so far is going to be called into question. sport is examined with questioning,” he said

“The story is not about a young Olympian. This is a scandal. And she is being swallowed up by it. I think it’s terrible.”

The two ice dancers were among the U.S. skaters who met with International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach on Wednesday, which Bach called Friday “very fruitful.”

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Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue: ‘We have our own empty medal box waiting in our bedroom,’ say American ice dancers

Both Hubbell and Donohue said they enjoyed meeting with Bach to share their views on the Valieva issue.

“We didn’t leave the meeting feeling, I don’t think any better about this situation, but at least you know we had our chance to say what it’s like to be an athlete in our shoes.” , Hubbell said. .

Donohue confirmed that they had received Olympic torches from the IOC, which Bach earlier clarified was a “token of appreciation” for an honest reunion, not consolation for a medal.

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