Official: Salt Lake City to pursue 2026 bid

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Utah Governor Gary Herbert and Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker announced Monday that the last American Olympic host the Games will pursue another Olympic bid in 2026.

“I’m excited and optimistic for the great state of Utah and Salt Lake City and the people of Utah to once again say we are ready, willing and able to host the Winter Games,” Governor Herbert said.

The organizing committee, comprised of business, government, sports, and community leaders prepared a 36-page report that examined whether it would be worthwhile for the city to host another Olympic Games and determined that “Utah’s Olympic legacy is strong and vibrant and ready to provide the foundation for a future Olympic Winter Games.”

The committee is confident that Salt Lake City has the infrastructure in place from the 2002 Olympics to host another Games, and the fact that they would only need to update their venues rather than building from scratch gives them a significant advantage on the other bids. The proposed budget for the 2026 Games is $1.67 billion, roughly $300 million higher than the city’s previous Olympics.

However, it’s believed that the USOC is more interested in hosting the 2024 Summer Games and may not field a bid for 2026, leaving Utah, Reno-Tahoe, and Denver in the cold (so to speak).

Diggins, Randall win historic gold medal for U.S. in cross-country

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The long, long wait is over.

Team USA ended their 42-year Olympic medal drought in cross-country skiing Wednesday and they made American cross-country history in the process.

Jessie Diggins and Kikkan Randall became the first American cross-country skiers to capture a gold medal by winning the women’s team sprint at the Alpensia Cross-Country Centre in PyeongChang, South Korea. Sweden captured silver and Norway took home bronze.

Diggins and Randall are the first American women to win an Olympic medal and join Bill Koch as the only American cross-country skiers to earn an Olympic medal.

The Americans advanced to the finals courtesy of their first place finish in the semifinals, beating Sweden and OAR in the process.

Diggins out-sprinted both the gold and silver medalists of the individual sprint (Stina Nilsson and Maiken Falla, respectively) in the final stretch to take the gold.

Results

Gold: Kikkan Randall and Jessie Diggins (USA)

Silver: Charlotte Kalla and Stina Nilsson (SWE)

Bronze: Marit Bjoergen and Maiken Falla (NOR)

Click here for a full recap of Team USA’s historic run

Czech Republic advance to medal round with shootout win vs. United States

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Petr Loukal scored the lone shootout goal as the Czech Republic defeated the United States and advance to the medal round.

Jan Kolar and Tomas Kundratek scored in regulation, while Pavel Francouz made 18 saves and stopped all five shootout attempts.

Ryan Donato scored his tournament-leading fifth goal, and Jim Slater added a shorthanded goal as the Olympics come to an end for the United States.