by Irvin Muchnick
U.S. Speedskating sources have told Concussion Inc. that a campaign by dissident members — who support the stories of Bridie Farrell and others that they were molested by one of the sport’s leading historical figures, Andy Gabel — concluded successfully with a decision by the organization last week to revoke Gabel’s membership.
Our sources said Gabel decided not to challenge the move, which was made by U.S. Speedskating executive director Ted Morris at the direction of the board. Morris did not respond to our request for comment, and it is not yet clear whether a proactive announcement is forthcoming.
If not, the momentum from the termination of Gabel’s membership could be blunted. Activists now are concentrating on overturning Gabel’s induction into the sport’s hall of fame. A 2014 public petition around this issue coincided with the campaign to force Chuck Wielgus, the long-time chief of USA Swimming, to stand down from his own scheduled induction into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in the face of evidence of denial and abuse of widespread coach sexual abuse on his watch.