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US Olympic Committee in quandary over Tonya Harding
12 January 2018, 03:09 | Max Haynes
Figure skater Tonya Harding waves to cameramen through her car window 15 January 1994 as she and ex-husband Jeff Gillooly drive up to her rural cabin
It wasn't long ago that Harding was nearly universally loathed as a pariah because of - well, you know - that thing about her being involved with a thug taking a baton to Kerrigan's knee in a failed attempt to knock her out of Olympic competition. I am sad as I write this but at the same time I'm happy that I had such an adventure with the movie [I, Tonya] and with recreating a new positive image for her in the public eye. "(Kerrigan's) got her life.
In an interview with ABC News, Harding says the ice is where she feels at home, calling it her "sanctuary".
Harding did not take kindly to being questioned by Morgan: "Thank you so much, I appreciate being on your show. And I sincerely wish her the best". Nevertheless, "I did however overhear them talking about stuff", she says to Robach, referring to Gillooly and Eckhardt.
Watch ABC News' two-hour special, "Truth and Lies: The Tonya Harding Story", on January 11 at 9 p.m. ET. "I'm just busy living my life". The film centers on Harding's role in the attack on Kerrigan ahead of the 1994 Winter Olympics.
She was sentenced to three years of supervised probation, 500 hours of community service, a $100,00 state find and was instructed to set up a $50,000 fund to benefit the Special Olympics.
While Harding was a rough-around-the-edges athlete in a sport in which most toed the line in the 1990s, she still was given opportunity after opportunity to represent the United States around the world.
US Olympic Committee in quandary over Tonya Harding
Dody Teachman, who was her coach at the 1991 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Minneapolis, Minnesota, still coaches Harding today.
"It was really fun", she said of her time at the championships in San Jose, California. "That's it", she said. "I can't believe that she said that". Harding also denied planning to injure Kerrigan and asked to remain on the U.S. Olympic team.
She still looks strong as she sails around the rink, but for the first American skater to do a triple axel, her glory days are most likely behind her.
Piers being Piers, tried to get the final word in and reiterated his confusion, asking if she was terminating the interview because she wouldn't accept who the real victim was.
Harding was also banned for life from the U.S. Figure Skating Association. February 25, 1994: Kerrigan wins the Olympic silver medal in Norway while Harding, still under investigation by authorities, finishes eighth. Steve Slocum, AP Shawn Eric Eckardt (L), bodyguard of figure skater Tonya Harding, and fellow defendant Derrick Smith (R) are joined by Smith's attorney Robert Goffredi as they face Judge Donald Londer during their arraignment on charges of conspiracy to commit assault in the attack on skater Nancy Kerrigan.
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