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U.S. speed skater Casey Dawson on way to Olympics after clearing COVID protocol

U.S. speed skater Casey Dawson on way to Olympics after clearing COVID protocol
Posted at 8:37 PM, Feb 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-07 01:33:42-05

United States speed skater Casey Dawson is on his way to the Winter Olympics.

The 21-year-old Utah native missed the men’s 5000m race on Sunday after testing positive for COVID-19 three weeks ago. The American claimed in an Instagram post that he tested negative twice in the U.S. last week but was not permitted to travel. 

"Everything was good until I received news that they now require four negative tests to even consider sending me over," Dawson wrote. "Also the testing site I used was on the approved list, and that was also changed as well."

He spent the Opening Ceremony at home wearing his Team USA gear. 

Dawson tested out of the protocol and flew from Salt Lake City on Sunday to join his team at the Winter Olympics. He had stops in Atlanta and Paris on the way to Beijing, where he is scheduled to land on Monday. 

He is slated to compete in the men's 1500m individual race on Tuesday and team pursuit competition next weekend, so it's possible he makes his Olympic debut less than 24 hours after making a trip around the world. 

View social media post: https://twitter.com/USSpeedskating/status/1490559798504411137?s=20&t=sky68qCqCgwYoWwjf80maQ

Team pursuit

Dawson is a key member of the U.S. team pursuit squad. 

The American trio of Dawson, Joey Mantia and Emery Lehman set the world record at a December World Cup event in Salt Lake City with a time of 3:34.47. Ethan Cepuran is also on the team.  

The four will contend for a medal, potentially gold, at the 2022 Winter Olympics. Dawson is capable of leading the pace for his team, as he did in its World Cup victory in Calgary last year. 

The men’s team pursuit competition begins with the quarterfinal on Feb. 13. The semifinal and final will take place on Feb. 15. 

Visit NBCOlympics.com for a full speed skating schedule. 

SEE MORE: Nils van der Poel edges Patrick Roest for 5000m gold medal