Tannenbaum waits in isolation, ready for rush to race

Posted at 10:47 AM, Feb 08, 2022

Time is a paradox for Katie Tannenbaum, whether measured by stopwatch or calendar

It's moving as fast as the sled that propelled Tannenbaum to the cusp of becoming an Olympian, even as the moments of anticipation seem to last as long as the gap between Olympics.

The 36-year-old skeleton racer didn't even begin racing until 2010 but rose to the World Cup level by 2011, but did not know she'd qualified for the 2022 Winter Olympics until late January.

Tannenbaum was set to be the U.S. Virgin Islands flag bearer as the territory's lone athlete but missed the Opening Ceremony due to positive COVID-19 tests that have left her in quarantine.

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Tuesday marks Tannenbaum's seventh day in isolation, giving her no test runs on the skeleton track with one day left to try and complete all of her training runs.

She just wants to control her own fate when it comes to racing in the tournament.

It’s really hard mentally. This isn’t the Olympic experience I imagined. They don’t provide any excuses, someone will just say the other person you got information from was wrong.

Katie Tannenbaum to Reuters

Tannenbaum says she's "not confident" that she'll be released from isolation in time to compete and believes that the CT values of her COVID tests are all above what the U.S. Virgin Islands National Olympic Committee has been told is the threshold to be considered COVID negative.

Her quotes are dripping with anguish and desperation, items deeply diverted from the many feel-good stories of the Olympics. But all she can do is wait and hope for the opportunity to rush to the starting line of one of the world's fastest races.