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Classy When it Counts

Published on January 25th, 2017

by Craig Leweck, Scuttlebutt
Anna Tunnicliffe is the gold standard for USA sailing in many ways. She is a consummate giver, always quick to mentor. As a sailor, she dominated the college ranks, then won the gold medal at the 2008 Olympics. Throughout it all, she shared her experiences online, inspiring sailors with her written words.

When the playwright for the 2012 Olympics cut her character before the final act, Anna sought a third campaign in the 49erFX, only to discover that her heart was not fully committed. Fast forward, her recent involvement as an instructor with the US Olympic Team rekindled old feelings. Sailing feelings.

She sought to “test the waters” during Sailing World Cup Miami, only to discover that Olympic protocol would keep her off the race course. With the details covered by the US Sailing announcement, I hope this is only a temporary setback. Having Anna back on the water, pushing the US Olympic Sailing program, would be huge.

I hope she holds onto those ‘sailing feelings’. Until then, here are her words…

“I needed the approval of all three bodies, World Sailing, USADA, and WADA but fell short by one. US Sailing, and the US Team, did everything they could to help right up to the very last minute. It’s just a ruling handed down from WADA. It’s no one’s fault, they just didn’t grant my request.

“I appreciate everyone’s support and encouragement over the last week in getting me psyched up for racing again, but we will have to wait until July at the earliest now. Although I am gutted and bummed, I can and will respect WADA’s decision and move forward accordingly.

“I would like to thank everyone for their kind words over the last 24 hours regarding me not being able to sail Miami. Some people have suggested that it is due to drug tests and it isn’t. I did “retire” from Sailing to be out of their drug testing pool, but entered into the CrossFit testing pool instead.

“The CF testing menu is just as strict as the WADA, and I have had my fair share of random tests from them too. So to be clear, it’s not from a drug test result, it is nearly the industry standard of being required to be back into the testing pool for 6 months before returning to competition.

“Again, I would like to thank everyone and I’ll be trying it all again when my 6 month period is up!”

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