Simone Biles cemented her favorite status for the P&G Championships by running away with the Secret Classic all-around title Saturday, her first meet since winning the World Championships all-around in October.
Biles, 17, scored 61.7 points at the tune-up meet in Hoffman Estates, Ill., beating 2012 Olympian and reigning World all-around silver medalist Kyla Ross by 1.65.
“I just came in here with a positive mind, and I’ve been out for a while, so I just tried to hit all four and have fun with it,” Biles said on Universal Sports. “I hope [U.S. National Team coordinator Martha Karolyi] was smiling.”
Biles led the field with a 15.8 on floor exercise and a 15.9 on vault, where she landed an Amanar (Ross performed a double twisting Yurchenko, one-half less twist than an Amanar). Biles also scored a 14.75 on uneven bars and closed with a 15.25 on balance beam, matching Ross for the highest score on that apparatus.
Biles was slated to compete in the American Cup in March and the Pacific Rim Championships in April, but pulled out of both meets due to a shoulder aggravation. She also had ankle surgery after the World Championships.
Biles and Ross will be the headliners at the P&G Championships, Aug. 21-24 in Pittsburgh. The team for October’s World Championships in Nanning, China, will be named later this summer.
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We already knew Katie Ledecky can beat the boys in practice, even an Olympic champion.
One of the many takeaways from this week’s Sports Illustrated profile of Ledecky is that she has beaten 11-time Olympic medalist Ryan Lochte in practice.
Ledecky and Lochte may rep different swim clubs — Ledecky in Washington, D.C., and Lochte in Charlotte — but they both take trips to the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colo., for altitude training.
“She swims like a guy,” Lochte said after training with Ledecky in Colorado Springs in March, according to SI. “I’ve never seen a female swimmer like that. … Her times are becoming good for a guy. She’s beating me now, and I’m like, What’s going on?”
When Ledecky broke the women’s 1500m freestyle world record for the third time at the August 2014 Pan Pacific Championships, her time of 15:28.36 was .01 faster than Lochte’s 1500m free time at the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials (one of the rare instances Lochte swam a 1500m free).
Ledecky has since re-broken the women’s 1500m free world record twice more, bringing it down to 15:25.48.
“I trained with her in Colorado once, and she made me look like I was stopping,” Lochte reportedly told media on his 31st birthday, Aug. 3 at the World Championships in Kazan, Russia. “She flew by me.”
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Athens Olympic softball champion Jennie Finch will manage the Bridgeport Bluefish, an independent minor-league baseball team on Sunday and, reportedly, become the first woman to manage a men’s pro baseball team.
Finch, a pitcher, retired from softball in 2010, two years after her sport’s Olympic farewell in Beijing, where she and the U.S. took silver behind Japan.
Finch has been an advocate for softball’s return to the Olympics, which could happen in Tokyo 2020.
The International Olympic Committee is expected to decide in August if baseball and softball, among four other sports, will be added for the Tokyo Games.
Finch, who is married to former MLB pitcher Casey Daigle, is also known for having struck out Albert Pujols.
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