Bode Miller

Tough day for Ligety, Miller as Mario Matt wins Val d’Isere slalom

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Ted Ligety and Bode Miller didn’t take any World Cup points from two races in Val d’Isere, France, this weekend, failing to qualify for the second run in Sunday’s slalom.

The Americans went one-two in last Sunday’s giant slalom in Beaver Creek, Colo., but neither was among the top 30 skiers Saturday or Sunday at the Stade Olympique de Bellevarde course.

Ligety was 39th in the first run Sunday. Miller skied off the course. Both had failed to finish the first run in the giant slalom Saturday.

“It was tough conditions where it was very hard snow but very grippy,” U.S. men’s Alpine coach Sasha Rearick said. “We’ve been training on ice getting ready for Val d’Isere and we didn’t make that transition very well today. So that’s something we’ve got to work on in the future.”

Instead, Austrian Mario Matt won his 15th career World Cup race (14th slalom) with a two-run time of 1 minute, 44.59 seconds. Swede Mattias Hargin was second, .53 behind. Italy’s Patrick Thaler took third.

Matt, 34, became the oldest man to win a World Cup slalom race, according to Infostrada.

“Over all the years, plenty of nice races,” Matt said on Eurosport. “I hope in this shape now, I can have many good results.”

David Chodounsky was the only American to earn a second run and finished seventh, his second-best World Cup result in 26 career races.

Austrian Marcel Hirscher, the reigning world and World Cup slalom champion, failed to qualify for the second run. That snapped a 10-race podium streak in slalom.

The Alpine skiing World Cup continues with a super-G and a downhill in Val Gardena, Italy, on Friday and Saturday.

Val d’Isere Slalom
1. Mario Matt (AUT) 1:44.59
2. Mattias Hargin (SWE) 1:45.12
3. Patrick Thaler (ITA) 1:45.37
4. Jean-Baptiste Grange (FRA) 1:45.41
5. Markus Larsson (SWE) 1:45.46
6. Andre Myhrer (SWE) 1:45.52
7. David Chodounsky (USA) 1:45.55
8. Manfred Moelgg (ITA) 1:45.57
9. Benjamin Raich (AUT) 1:45.63
10. Felix Neureuther (GER) 1:45.70

Ligety, Miller ski out of giant slalom

Aly Raisman calls out airport worker for ‘muscles’ comment

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Three-time Olympic champion Aly Raisman called out a male airport security worker who she says questioned whether she had enough muscles to be a gymnast.

Raisman posted on Twitter on Wednesday that after a female Transportation Security Administration worker said she recognized Raisman by her biceps, a male employee said, “I don’t see any muscles.” Raisman called the encounter “rude & uncomfortable.”

Raisman, who turned 23 Thursday, says she works “very hard to be healthy & fit.” She says that if a man can’t compliment a girl’s muscles, he’s sexist.

Raisman didn’t say where or when the airport exchange took place.

Raisman previously authored a powerful social media post about body image, shouting out “to all the boys from 5th-9th grade who made fun of me for being ‘too strong’” in November.

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MORE: U.S. gymnasts give emotional testimony about sexual abuse

 

House OKs bill requiring sports groups to report sex abuse

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Angered by allegations that some members of USA Gymnastics were sexually abused, the House overwhelmingly backed legislation on Thursday that requires amateur sports groups recognized by the U.S. Olympic Committee to report claims of sexual abuse to police.

The vote was 415-3, with the bill’s sponsor, Rep. Susan Brooks, R-Ind., saying the Olympic community clearly had failed to protect its athletes and must do better.

The legislation stems from allegations that a sports doctor for USA Gymnastics sexually assaulted gymnasts he treated for hip and back injuries. The doctor, Larry Nassar, has denied wrongdoing. He is currently the defendant in four separate criminal cases. In one of the cases, a Michigan judge is deciding whether there’s enough evidence to send the former Michigan State University doctor to trial on allegations he sexually assaulted seven gymnasts at a campus clinic or at his home basement.

Three former elite U.S. gymnasts, including 2000 Olympian Jamie Dantzscher, have also accused Nassar of touching them inappropriately while he disguised the abuse as treatment. In all, more than 100 women have alleged they were abused by Nassar over more than two decades.

“I understand how challenging it is to share painful stories of sexual abuse, and I am proud of the brave gymnasts who have shared their stories — stories that should never have happened, and stories that went inexcusably unanswered,” Brooks said. “Their stories demand our attention and action.”

The bill also relaxes the statute of limitations for those seeking civil damages. Victims alleging they were abused will have 10 years from the time they reach adulthood to file a civil lawsuit.

The bill also clarifies that once a victim has established that harm occurred, the court will presume damages of $150,000.

A similar bill, sponsored by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, has cleared a Senate panel. Feinstein said her legislation would make it safe and easy for victims to report abuse and that organizations such as USA Gymnastics would have to ensure coaches and personnel are trained in sexual abuse prevention.

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MORE: U.S. gymnasts give emotional testimony about sexual abuse