The British Bobsleigh and Skeleton Association has announced the removal of director Colin Rattigan with immediate effect.
The governing body said it took what it described as the “unprecedented” step due to the fact that Rattigan “fundamentally violated the BBSA administrators’ code of conduct,” adding that he had “thereby undermined the same. organization he was appointed to serve. “
Rattigan’s dismissal is understood as unrelated to an ongoing independent investigation, commissioned by UK Sport, into allegations of racism, bullying and harassment within the organization, which was brought by Rattigan at the beginning of this one. year.
In a statement to the PA news agency, the BBSA said, “Today… the BBSA Board of Directors took the unprecedented step of removing Colin Rattigan from the position of Director of the BBSA with immediate effect.
“The exact details for this will remain reserved to the Board for the time being but, through his actions, the Board has no doubts that Colin Rattigan has fundamentally violated the BBSA Directors Code of Conduct and the BBSA Constitution and thus undermined the organization. that he had been assigned to serve.
“While we will not comment further on the incidents that led to this decision, they are separate from the issues that will be covered by the independent investigation commissioned by UK Sport.
“We welcome this investigation and are happy to cooperate fully. We strongly reject the allegations raised in recent media reports and wish to be clear that we have yet to present any evidence to support them. “
Rattigan, who competed for Britain in two Winter Olympics, was named to BBSA’s board of directors in 2019 as part of a jolt following a disappointing performance at the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics, which led to the deprivation of the bobsleigh. of £ 5 million in funds.
Rattigan was the only black member of the BBSA board and is believed to have raised issues regarding discriminatory treatment of a number of black bobsled athletes, including double Olympian Lamin Deen.
A senior BBSA coach wrote separately to UK Sport last week.
Additionally, Rattigan claims he was subjected to an “extended period” of bullying and harassment, and claims that the tapes of the board meetings were made in an attempt to trap him.
In a statement to the Palestinian Authority news agency following his removal, Rattigan highlighted the positive role he believed he had played within the organization and expressed a desire for the investigation to continue “just and honestly. “.
Rattigan said, “When I was asked to return to the BBSA and help build the bobsled, it was a proud moment as I believe giving back is important once you reach elite status in your sport.
“In the short time that I have been in the position of bob BBSA, despite all the challenges, I have provided the leadership, strategic vision and plan and improved the depth of collaboration, commitment and consultation to put a plan into action.
“We were able to successfully complete a season on less than a tight budget. We were able to make contributions to help teams achieve results during that season and continue their quest for Olympic medals.
“It’s not about me. It’s about the future of the British bob and it does the right thing. We hope that the UK Sport investigation continues fairly and honestly. “
In 2017, the BBSA was the subject of a separate investigation by UK Sport, which looked into allegations of a “toxic culture” within the organization.
UK Sport continues to fund BBSA’s successful skeletal program, which has netted three medalists in Pyeongchang – one of whom, Lizzy Yarnold, is a current member of the BBSA board – to the tune of £ 7.2 million during the current Olympic cycle.
A UK Sport statement read: “UK Sport has been informed of developments at the BBSA. Such decisions regarding the BBSA Board are the responsibility of the BBSA. “