Monday, December 2, 2013

Glory & Unfairness

Gold in Calgary!!

Noelle after rightfully winning the race!

Note the tape under the thumb.

The Case

As many of you may know already Noelle posted the fastest combined time for the World Cup race in Calgary last Friday and was named the winner.  Shortly after, the British team complained about something on Noelle's handle (a  nickle sized piece of tape that is used as a marker for placement of Noelle's hand on her handle, see pic above).  It was put in the minds of the jury that this piece of tape was considered an extra handle, which it clearly is not.  The jury then proceeded with a sled inspection, which consisted of pointing out this piece of tape being an extra handle which is not allowed. Noelle's sled went into a pre-race inspection earlier that week where the sled passed the inspection with this piece of tape and had not been altered.  When the jury asked the sled inspector if this was on the sled, he pronounced that it was not there during the inspection, or he would not have passed the sled off. We assured him that it was indeed there, but had not been noticed. We provided evidence that earlier that day Noelle had slid in training with it present and brought it into sled inspection right after training.
We were denied our argument and instead of using a warning or a fine, they decided to jump straight to disqualification from the race.

Emotions & Integrity

As you can tell we are devistated by this result and false accusation. It has been difficult to deal with having a DSQ next to your name when you know that you are in the right and did nothing wrong. The rules are very very vague and have been interpreted poorly, resulting in Noelle's DSQ. We have worked very hard to maintain a good reputation and have done nobody harm in what we do and what we stand for. It has been a rollercoaster of emotions from anger to peace and back again. Our integrity means much more than trying to sneak a piece of tape on the handle past the jury, there is no real added value by having it there.


Lets use a hypothetical scenario here and assume that this piece of tape is indeed an extra handle and that it was not present in the inspection. So this would mean that we did break a rule and should pay a price for it. Now, does this piece of tape, which offers no advantage to Noelle as she slides down the track, merit a warning? a fine? or a DSQ?

The Real Penalty

So the real kicker here is receiving "0" points for that race.  That now puts her ranked 63rd in the world and makes it that much more difficult to qualify for the Olympics.  There is definitely an added pressure to do good in every race and allows no room for errors. (For a description on what Noelle must do to qualify for the Olympics click here or click the yellow box "Olympic Qualifications" at the top of the screen.) Here we are again chasing points, just as we did in 2006 after Noelle was hit by the bobsled.

Thank You

Now I want to take a moment and thank everyone for their thoughts, comments, prayers, encouragement and concern on our behalf. We are truly grateful for the support that we have and believe that we can move on and get past this rough moment. We believe that there is a real battle of good and evil taking place on this earth, and we stand strong in our belief that we are on the side fighting for good. We have a great army of help and encouragement to help us every step of the way. So Thank You!!!


  1. Please know how very, very sorry we are for you that you are being so CHEATED out of that win! It's totally ridiculous and we, your biggest fans, are still fighting mad! Praying for you, let us know if there is anything we can do.

  2. Outsider's Perspective: What a pleasure it has been to get to know both of you on a more personal level this year. The speed bump that happened to Noelle and your family in Calgary is frustrating to say the least. Fortunately, Drive and Motivation have never seemed to lack with you guys and now it seems that this experience may have "awakened the beast" that in all reality needed no extra help;) We are behind you guys 100% and will be in Park City tomorrow to cheer you guys on.