Former U.S. swimmer Dara Torres has participated in five Olympics, ultimately making her final appearance at Beijing in 2008. She has traveled the globe to compete in her sport and won 12 medals in the process (four gold, four silver and four bronze).
But even she hasn’t seen anything quite like Rio.
“I feel bad for the athletes that have to deal with this,” Torres said on CBS Sports Radio’s After Hours with Amy Lawrence. “They’re trying to focus on their events – and this is the biggest event of their life – and to have all these sort of sidetracks is not a good thing for them. At least for the U.S. contingency, I know that the national governing bodies hopefully take all this into consideration. They have in the past. They bring trunks of food, water – anything that we need. So hopefully these stories are exaggerated and not as bad as they say and hopefully the athletes can just concentrate on the task at hand.”
Torres, 49, will be in Rio covering the Games as an analyst for Westwood One. She is excited to go but also cautious given the amount of terrorist attacks that have plagued numerous countries in recent months and years.
“Well, I’m hoping with the way things have changed over the last several years that Rio will up its security and be prepared for something if something were to happen,” Torres said. “But I’m taking precautions, too. I’ve hired a security guard or body guard to hang out with my daughter and husband and I while we’re over there. That makes me real nervous. They may see something happening in the background or in front of us that I might not notice if I’m walking and will protect us. So it does make me nervous and I’m definitely taking precautions, but I’m hoping that at an event as wonderful as the Olympic Games – those five Olympic rings represent each continent – that you come together and hopefully there’s some peace.”