Gracie Gold

Gracie Gold begins skating with new coach Frank Carroll

Leave a comment

Rising U.S. figure skater Gracie Gold has “officially commenced training” with venerated coach Frank Carroll, U.S. Figure Skating announced Wednesday.

“I’m happy to be working with Frank Carroll,” Gold said, according to a press release. “He’s a wonderful coach. I’m grateful for this opportunity and I am looking forward to the future.”

Gold, 18, who had trained in the Chicago area and, recently, Canton, Mich., will be in Los Angeles full time, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Gold split with Chicagoland-based coach Alex Ouriashev in August, raising concerns less than six months before the Sochi Olympics. She shot to prominence under Ouriashev, winning silver at the 2013 U.S. Championships and finishing sixth at the World Championships, helping the U.S. earn three women’s singles spots for Sochi.

She stumbled in her first competition of this season, taking second at the U.S. International Classic earlier this month. The field there did not include any international stars, nor did it include U.S. champion Ashley Wagner.

Carroll, based in El Segundo, Calif., is best known for coaching five-time world champion Michelle Kwan for much of her career and, currently, 2010 Olympic champion Evan Lysacek.

“I am excited to be coaching Gracie Gold,” Carroll said. “We have been working together for about a week now, and I feel like we are a good student-coach match. I’m looking forward to the progress she will continue to make as an athlete.”

Gold’s next event is expected to be Skate Canada, Oct. 25-27, in Saint John, New Brunswick. The star of the competition there should be reigning world and Olympic champion Yuna Kim.

The Olympic trials are in January in Boston, where Gold is expected, but certainly not assured, to snatch one of three spots in Sochi.

I'm home ❤️ #cali #sochi #2014

A post shared by Gracie Gold (@graciegold95) on

Report: Evan Lysacek in doubt for Skate America

Laurie Hernandez eyes return to competition in 2018

Getty Images
Leave a comment

NEW YORK – Laurie Hernandez hardly considers her 14 months away from competitive gymnastics a break.

Since earning Olympic team gold and balance beam silver in Rio, the 17-year-old won “Dancing with the Stars,” authored a book and even enrolled in ballet lessons.

But her most rewarding experience has been speaking at schools. Students have asked her seemingly every question, from when she started taking gymnastics classes (age 5) to whether she climbed trees when she was younger (yes, all the time).

Seeing how many children were inspired by her Rio performance motivated Hernandez as she prepares to return to the sport.

“I didn’t realize at the Olympics how many people were truly watching,” Hernandez said Wednesday night at the annual Women’s Sports Foundation Salute to Women in Sports. “Now I’m excited to get back into the gym.”

Hernandez recently added handstand holds, back tucks and front flips to her conditioning program, in addition to continuing to run and lift weights.

“It’s a little difficult, but it’s fine,” she said. “I’ll push it a little more after the holidays.”

She has her eye on returning to competition in 2018.

“That’s definitely the hope,” Hernandez said. “I’m not going to rush anything, but I would love to compete in 2018.”

Hernandez, who said her next goal in gymnastics is to compete at the world championships for the first time and hopefully the 2020 Olympics, has not yet identified her comeback meet.

She noted that Aly Raisman took more than two years off after the London Olympics.

“I know every athlete is different,” Hernandez said. “But I wouldn’t mind following in her footsteps.”

Simone Biles, who has not competed since winning four gold medals in Rio, recently announced that she plans on returning to full-time training Nov. 1 and competition next summer.

“I look up to her, even though we are teammates,” Hernandez said. “I can’t wait to see her out there, but hopefully I’ll be out there with her soon.”

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: Laurie Hernandez explains wink, nervous Olympic moments in book excerpt

Olympic cycling champion running for Congress

Getty Images
Leave a comment

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — Olympic cycling gold medalist Marty Nothstein is the latest to announce he’s running for the eastern Pennsylvania congressional seat being vacated by fellow Republican U.S. Rep. Charles Dent.

Dent, a former state senator, is a centrist Republican who has held the seat since 2005. He’s retiring after his term expires next year.

Nothstein, who won sprint silver in 1996 and gold in 2000, is the only American track cyclist to win an Olympic title at a fully attended Games.

Two Republican state representatives, Ryan Mackenzie and Justin Simmons, previously announced they’re running for Dent’s 15th District seat.

Democrat Bill Leiner, a former Lehigh County commissioner, is also running.

Dent’s district includes Allentown and all of Lehigh County, and parts of four surrounding counties.

Republicans in 2011 stretched the district almost 90 miles to the Susquehanna River in central Pennsylvania to make it more Republican.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: 2018 Tour de France route unveiled