Two-time Winter Olympics champ Shaun White reentered the world of snowboarding this weekend and ended up where he normally does: on top.
White was in Breckenridge, Colo. for the Dew Tour superpipe, his first event after knee surgery this summer and a run in with the Nashville PD in September. But White had no problem landing his signature Tomahawk double-cork McTwist 1260 to finish first with a final score of 95.25.
“It’s the road to Sochi, man. Here we go,” White told the Denver Post. “For me, it’s double or nothing.”
White, somehow the oldest competitor at only 26, will aim to win his third straight Olympic halfpipe gold in Sochi, and also win the slopestyle gold for good measure when the sport debuts in 2014.
He held off last year’s Dew Tour superpipe champ, Louie Vito, who pulled off four consecutive double-cork 1080s, but was unable to cap his run with a successful 1260, stumbling on his key move.
“I have a few tricks I didn’t end up doing that I’ve got in my bag,” Vito, who ended up second with a 90.00, said. “So this was a good start to the year, and I guess I’ll start warming those up. I haven’t done a lot those tricks since March. I’m not really stressing it. I’ve got tricks still to do.”
Kyle Snyder, who became the youngest American to win a World Wrestling Championship on Sept. 11, had planned to redshirt his sophomore year at Ohio State to focus on training for the Rio Olympics.
But Snyder is back wrestling for the Buckeyes this season.
“Kyle wants to help the team win the national title,” Ohio State coach Tom Ryan said. “It doesn’t hurt Kyle’s chances to make the Olympic team. We meet. He jumps on it.”
The announcement that Snyder would wrestle this season was made at 12:01 a.m. on New Year’s Day.
Learn more about Snyder in an NBC Columbus affiliate profile.
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CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand (AP) — Top-ranked golfer Lydia Ko says the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro will be her top priority this year.
Ko, who will defend her New Zealand Open title from Friday, said there was “so much excitement and vibe” around the Olympic tournament, “especially as it’s the first time women will play at the Olympics in golf.”
The 18-year-old New Zealander said “ever since they announced that golf will be in the Olympics I said, ‘Hey, I want to get myself on that team.’ For any athlete to say you’re an Olympian is a whole new proud feeling, and to represent your country on such an international stage it’s going to be a pretty special week.”
The 54-hole New Zealand Open at the Clearwater Golf Club is co-sanctioned by the Ladies European Tour and Australian Ladies PGA.
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