Adam Gemili and Laviai Nielsen were removed from UK Athletics’ world-class program after choosing to stay with their trainer Rana Reider, who is the subject of a US investigation by Safe Sport after several sexual misconduct complaints against him had been raised.
That means both sprinters will no longer receive lottery sponsorship, which can go as high as £ 28,000, or medical assistance from UKA while staying with Reider in Florida. However, a third British athlete, Daryll Neita, who was trained by Reider to the women’s 100m Olympic final, continues to receive funding after deciding to leave his tumbleweed training group.
In a statement, UK Athletics said, “The position of UKA has not changed in that any athlete who works directly with Rana Reider will not be supported by the world class program given US Safe Sport’s confirmed sexual misconduct complaints against them can .
“Adam Gemili and Laviai Nielsen have decided to stay in Florida and accept that they will not be supported by the WCP for the time being. UKA understands the great commitment these athletes are committed to spending the winter in Florida and that they will remain part of the training group until another update is received from US Safe Sport. “
Laviai Nielsen competes for Great Britain at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. Photo: Ryan Pierse / Getty Images
Reider has built a brilliant reputation in the sport after leading multiple Olympic and world champions to fame, including the 2020 Tokyo 200m Olympic Champion Andre De Grasse and the triple jump world champion Christian Taylor.
When the Guardian released the story last month that he was under investigation, Reider’s attorney Ryan Stevens said the allegations against his client were “untested” and “unproven”.
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Gemili said he decided to stay with Reider while the investigation continued.
“After speaking with UKA, US Safe Sport and various athletes within the Tumbleweed group, I believe the right thing to do is to trust that the right organizations are doing a thorough investigation and come up with their results quickly,” he said.
“UKA understands my decision and although I will not participate in the WCP program while the investigation is ongoing, we will continue to work closely together.”