Hannah Teter

Hannah Teter fails to qualify for Dew Tour halfpipe final

Leave a comment

2006 Olympic champion Hannah Teter‘s bid to make a third U.S. Olympic Team is off to an inauspicious start.

Teter, 26, was the biggest name not to qualify for the women’s snowboard halfpipe final at the Dew Tour iON Mountain Championships in Breckenridge, Colo., on Wednesday. She took 16th in qualifying, where the top eight advance to the final.

Full results and a recap are available here. Dew Tour will begin live streaming coverage here Thursday.

The Dew Tour is the first of five events that make up the U.S. Olympic Trials for snowboarding and freeskiing. The overall Olympic qualification standings will be determined by the two best results for an athlete over the five events.

Up to three athletes can be named to the U.S. Olympic Team with this criteria. A fourth athlete can be named as a discretionary selection after the Olympic qualification events conclude.

Teter, who also won 2010 Olympic silver, is vying for one of those spots with 2002 Olympic champion Kelly Clark, 2006 Olympic silver medalist Gretchen Bleiler, two-time Olympian Elena Hight and reigning world champion Arielle Gold, among others.

Clark was the top qualifier into Saturday’s women’s halfpipe final. In second was another American, Chloe Kim, who, at 13, is too young to compete in the Sochi Olympics.

Schedule, athletes to watch at Dew Tour

Mikaela Shiffrin wins Aspen World Cup slalom

Leave a comment

With a slalom win today in Aspen, Colo., Mikaela Shiffrin broke some of the barriers she had been chasing.

“I don’t know if the stars will ever align like that again,” Shiffrin said in a media conference after being told she won with the biggest margin of victory in the history of women’s slalom since 1968: 3.07 seconds. “I don’t think [my competitors] are going to let me get away with three seconds ever again.”

En route to her fourth consecutive slalom World Cup title – which would tie the record for the most with Switzerland’s Vreni Schneider from 1992-95 – she became the first female skier to win four World Cup slalom races in a row since Austria’s Marlies Schild did it in the 2011-12 season.

In addition, Shiffrin became the first female skier from the U.S. to win a slalom World Cup race in Aspen. And she’s now tied with France’s Perrine Pelen for sixth overall with total slalom World Cup victories.

“I was pissed after I made that ridiculous mistake yesterday,” Shiffrin said to media, referencing yesterday’s giant slalom crash. Both her and Lindsey Vonn crashed and did not finish in Aspen’s giant slalom. “I tried to use that anger today.”

Shiffrin called the mistake a “brainfart” and Vonn dismissed it because “giant slalom isn’t [her] strongest event.”

But, Shiffrin added that she already has her mind set on tomorrow, where she races slalom again, on NBC at 3 p.m. ET. The complete of the Olympic sports schedule is here.

“I just as quickly have to go back and settle in,” she said. “Tomorrow is a new race. I have to find a different motivation and try to take the same mentality and keep fighting.”

Slovakia’s Veronika Velez Zuzulova was second behind Shiffrin, followed by Sweden’s Frida Hansdotter.

By finishing behind Shiffrin in Aspen, Zuzulova extends her slalom World Cup podium finish streak to four.

Hansdotter has the second-most second place World Cup slalom finishes at 13 total, including today’s race. Only Pernilla Wiberg, of Sweden, has more with a total of 14.

MORE: Shiffrin, Vonn discuss friendship and rivalry

Fencing great Valentina Vezzali fails to qualify for Rio 2016

Mario Monti, Valentina Vezzali
Leave a comment

TURIN, Italy (AP) – Six-time Olympic champion fencer Valentina Vezzali has failed to qualify for next year’s Rio de Janeiro Games.

The 41-year-old Vezzali was eliminated in the second round of the foil event at the Trofeo Inalpi meet Saturday, while Italian teammate Arianna Errigo reached the semifinals and gained the necessary points to qualify.

Vezzali won at least one gold at the last five Olympics in either individual or team foil. She has a total of nine Olympic medals and 25 at world championships.

Her second son was born in 2013, the year in which she also became a member of Italy’s parliament.

Vezzali told the Gazzetta dello Sport this week that “I had another son and it was really difficult to come back. … I don’t think I have anything else to prove.”

MORE: Hanyu, Miyahara win NHK; Wagner into Grand Prix Final