Those who’ve had a hankering for gymnastics ever since watching the Fierce Five take gold in London are in luck: the 2013 season kicks off at the American Cup in Worcester, Mass. this weekend.
And while Fierce Fiver Kyla Ross and London alternate Ebee Price were forced out of the event with injuries, the U.S. will be well represented by up-n-comers Katelyn Ohashi and Simone Biles, both competing in their first senior competition.
“I was ready for it,” Ohashi, who trains under 1988 Olympic champ Valeri Liukin, said. “I feel prepared for this meet and I’m excited to be a senior.”
They’ll flip in the footsteps of gold medalists Aly Raisman, Shawn Johnson, Nastia Liukin, Shannon Miller, and Mary Lou Retton, who all competed at the same international invitational early in their careers.
The two young Americans will face off against London Olympians Vanessa Ferrari of Italy, Asuka Teramoto of Japan, and Victoria Moors of Canada during Saturday’s World Cup event.
U.S. gymnasts Danell Leyva and Jake Dalton headline the men’s competition, along with London all-around silver medalist Marcel Nguyen of Germany, and Kristian Thomas of Great Britain.
Catch the American Cup live on NBC Saturday starting at 1pm est.
U.S. runner Allyson Felix says she expects to be close to 100 percent when 400m qualifying begins on Aug. 13.
Felix, who hurt her right ankle during training this spring, was at less than 100 percent earlier this month when she ran in the U.S. Olympic Trials.
She failed to qualify for her favorite race, the 200m, and will not have a chance to defend her Olympic title at that distance.
At the U.S. training camp on Friday, Felix said she doesn’t think she’ll ever get past the disappointment of not getting to go for the 200m-400m double, but she’s focused on the task at hand. The 400m final is Aug. 15.
MORE: How Felix handled the minutes after she missed the Olympic 200m team
BUDAPEST, Hungary (AP) — The International Weightlifting Federation has banned the Russian federation and all its weightlifters from the Rio Olympics.
The IWF said Friday the multiple cases of doping by Russian weightlifters have “seriously damaged” the integrity of the sport. The eight Russian Olympic spots have been offered to other countries.
The IWF said the doping results produced by Russian weightlifters are “extremely shocking and disappointing.”
Russia, China, North Korea and Kazakhstan are the world’s top four weightlifting nations.
MORE: U.S. Olympic weightlifting team complete