Asafa Powell

Asafa Powell among Jamaicans who tested positive

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Former 100-meter world-record holder Asafa Powell is among a reported five Jamaican track and field athletes who tested positive for banned substances.

Powell and Sherone Simpson are two of the five, according to several reports. Powell and Simpson are members of the same track club, MVP.

The Jamaica Gleaner reported earlier Sunday that five Jamaicans had tested positive and confirmed Powell and Simpson. The Jamaica Observer later reported a Canadian trainer of Powell and Simpson was detained in Italy, but Sports Illustrated‘s David Epstein reports Powell’s agent said there was questioning but no arrest.

Usain Bolt‘s agent told multiple outlets that Bolt is not part of it.

Though the Telegraph reported that another Olympic 4×100 relay gold medalist Nesta Carter also turned in a positive test, no other outlets confirmed. The Jamaica Gleaner has reported five named athletes, none of whom are Carter.

A statement was tweeted from Powell’s Twitter account.

Powell and Simpson both tested positive for the same banned stimulant, oxilofrine, at Jamaica’s national championships in June, according to Reuters.

Powell, 30, held the world record in the 100 of 9.74 seconds until Bolt took it prior to the Beijing Olympics.

Powell is the fourth fastest man of all time, behind Bolt, Tyson Gay (who admitted to a positive test earlier Sunday) and Yohan Blake.

He failed to make the Jamaican team for August’s world championships, finishing seventh in the 100 at trials after making three straight Olympic teams.

A two-time world bronze medalist in the 100, Powell is known as the the greatest sprinter never to win an individual Olympic medal.

Carter, 27, was part of Jamaica’s Olympic champion 4×100-meter relay teams in 2008 and 2012.

Simpson, 28, was the 2008 Olympic silver medalist in the women’s 100 meters.

It’s another blow to Jamaican track and field, which already had its most decorated active Olympian in Veronica Campbell-Brown fail a test in May. She reportedly will likely serve a reduced six-month sentence.

Tyson Gay: I’m going to be honest with USADA

Wagner, Asada, Hanyu headline NHK Trophy in Japan; Grand Prix Final berths on the line

Ashley Wagner
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Three-time U.S. national champion Ashley Wagner looks to qualify for her fourth consecutive Grand Prix Final at this weekend’s NHK Trophy in Nagano, Japan. A medal of any color should be good enough to get her to Barcelona, but she faces a tough field.

Japan’s Mao Asada returned to competition this season and is poised to qualify for the most elite competition since the Sochi Olympics (where she finished sixth) and 2014 World Championships (which she won). Finishing on the podium would earn a berth to the final for Asada. Also in the field are Americans Mirai Nagasu and Courtney Hicks, Japan’s Satoko Miyahara, and one of Russia’s darlings from last season, Anna Pogorilaya.

Olympic champion and last year’s Grand Prix Final winner Yuzuru Hanyu, surely to be the overwhelming crowd favorite in the men’s field, will look to improve his short program results from his other Grand Prix appearance. At Skate Canada, two of his three jumping passes recceived zero points. He rallied in the free skate, finishing second behind Canada’s Patrick Chan. Chan is essentially a lock for the final, while a top three finish would seal the deal for Hanyu.

MORE: Javier Fernandez qualifies for second straight home Grand Prix Final

Other men in the hunt for Grand Prix Final berths competing in Nagano include China’s Jin Boyang and Russia’s Maxim Kovtun, who also need podium finishes to lock up spots in Barcelona. Jin’s and Kovtun’s finishes will likely dictate whether or not American Max Aaron qualifies to the final. More on that process here. No U.S. man has qualified since Jeremy Abbott did it in 2011.

MORE: Jason Brown withdraws from NHK Trophy

Reigining U.S. pairs champions Alexa Scimeca and Chris Knierim can make the Grand Prix Final with a medal in Japan.

The U.S. is sending three ice dance couples to Japan, of which two have a shot at qualifying for Barcelona. Siblings and Sochi Olympians Maia and Alex Shibutani can finish in any 1-2 combination with Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue allowing for both duos to qualify for the final. Madison Chock and Evan Bates, U.S. ice dance champions, already qualified. will stream for subscribers live coverage of men’s, women’s, pairs and ice dance short programs and free skates. NBC and NBC Sports Live Extra will have coverage Sunday from 4-6 p.m. ET.

Men’s short program — Friday, 2:10 a.m. ET (start order here)
Women’s short program — Friday, 5:05 a.m. ET (start order here)
Men’s free skate — Saturday, 2:30 a.m. ET
Women’s free skate — Saturday, 5:35 a.m. ET

Inside the #RoadtoRio photo shoots

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NBC Olympics
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Bringing together over 100 Summer Olympians and Olympic hopefuls with puppies, samba dancers and supermodels, NBC Olympics and the United States Olympic Committee partnered for an extensive five-day media summit in West Hollywood, Ca. The athletes took part in photo shoots, interviews and video segments all in preparation for next summer’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Over the course of the summit, participants shared behind-the-scenes moments on social media using the #RoadtoRio hashtag. NBC Olympics also launched its official Snapchat account, with the username NBCOlympics. Here are some of the highlights:

Olympians fell in puppy love:


Then got a crash course in Brazil’s signature dance, the samba:


A photobooth with props let the athletes–and even Bob Costas–show off their silly sides:


Olympic fans like Alessandra Ambrosio and Flula dropped by:


In between shoots, athletes from different sports mingled:


The faux-Rio beach was the perfect set:


But these Olympic stars needed only a simple white backdrop to shine:

Wait who is the Olympian here! Linnéa stealing the show at the @nbcolympics #roadtorio

A photo posted by Alysia Montaño (@alysiamontano) on


Follow NBC Olympics on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat (username NBCOlympics).


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