Travis Tygart, President and CEO of USADA, presented to a packed house of athletes and coaches attending the USANA FIS Junior and U23 Cross Country World Championships. (U.S. Ski Team-Tom Kelly)
MIDWAY, UT (Feb. 2, 2017) - Athletes attending the International Ski Federation’s 2017 Junior Nordic and U23 World Championships in Utah showed their interest in clean sport, with a packed house attending a presentation Wednesday evening from U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) President and CEO Travis Tygart. More than 100 athletes, coaches and team personnel from a dozen nations attended the hour-long session that was organized by the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA).
“Clean sport is vital to the future of athletics,” said USSA President and CEO Tiger Show. “Each of us needs to be a leader in this movement to ensure all athletes have a fair playing field and a safe, healthy sport.”
The World Championships in Utah provided the USSA with an opportunity to both raise awareness and educate.
“This was a remarkable opportunity to impact young athletes from around the world to learn more about doping management and the importance of clean sport,” said USSA Executive Vice President, Athletics Luke Bodensteiner. “USADA is one of the most highly regarded anti-doping agencies in the world and those attending had great respect for what Travis had to say.”
The program stressed the principles of clean sport including both fair play and personal health. Every hand in the room went up as Tygart asked, ‘how many of you came here to Utah to win?’ Just as many were raised when he questioned, ‘how many of you would feel cheated if you knew another athlete had broken the rules to beat you?’
The program was especially important given the breadth of nations in attendance, providing a depth of education some of them may not have in their own countries.
“We have to be in this to win,” stressed Tygart, conveying responsibility to everyone in the room to be watchdogs for doping in sport. “You can make a difference in keeping your sport clean.”
In addition to the presentation, athletes and coaches had the opportunity to raise questions on their own about anti-doping and clean sport.
The Junior World Championships are running in Utah through this weekend, with events on the 2002 Olympic venues including the Soldier Hollow Nordic Center near Midway and the Utah Olympic Park in Park City. Wednesday’s presentation was held in the team hotel for cross country, Zermatt Resort, in Midway.