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Usain Bolt among IAAF World Athlete of the Year nominees

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Usain Bolt is one of 10 men nominated for the IAAF’s Male Athlete of the Year, bidding to win the award for a sixth time after another Olympic triple-gold performance.

Bolt, who won the award after previous Olympics in 2008 and 2012, will go up against a field made up of Rio gold medalists.

That includes South African Wayde van Niekerk, the only man to break a world record in an Olympic event this year, the 400m in Rio.

The American finalists are Ashton Eaton and Christian Taylor, who repeated as Olympic champions in the decathlon and triple jump, respectively. Eaton won the Men’s Athlete of the Year in 2015 after breaking his world record at the world championships.

The 10 Women’s Athlete of the Year nominees include nine Rio gold medalists plus American Keni Harrison, who failed to qualify for the Olympic team but broke the 100m hurdles world record two weeks before the Games.

No women who previously captured the award are among the nominees, such as 2015 winner Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia.

In November, three men’s and three women’s finalists will be announced.

The winners will be announced Dec. 2 in Monaco at the IAAF awards night.

Here are the nominees (italics = broke Olympic event world record in 2016):

Men
Usain Bolt (JAM) — 100m, 200m, 4x100m
Thiago Braz da Silva (BRA) — Pole vault
Ashton Eaton (USA) — Decathlon
Mo Farah (GBR) — 5000m, 10,000m
Eliud Kipchoge (KEN) — Marathon
Conseslus Kipruto (KEN) — 3000m steeplechase
Omar McLeod (JAM) — 110m hurdles
David Rudisha (KEN) — 800m
Christian Taylor (USA) — Triple jump
Wayde van Niekerk (RSA) — 400m

Women
Almaz Ayana (ETH) — 10,000m
Ruth Beitia (ESP) — High jump
Vivian Cheruiyot (KEN) — 5000m
Keni Harrison (USA) — 100m hurdles
Caterine Ibarguen (COL) — Triple jump
Ruth Jebet (BRN) — 3000m steeplechase
Sandra Perkovic (CRO) — Discus
Caster Semenya (RSA) — 800m
Elaine Thompson (JAM) — 100m, 200m
Anita Wlodarczyk (POL) — Hammer throw

VIDEO: ‘I am Bolt’ trailer

Gus Kenworthy’s hard crash dents Olympic double hope (video)

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Gus Kenworthy‘s goal of making the Olympic team in two events may have disintegrated as he tumbled to the bottom of the halfpipe in Mammoth Mountain, Calif., on Friday night.

He crashed on the lip of the pipe on his last run to finish ninth at the fifth and final Olympic ski halfpipe qualifier. Kenworthy needed at least a runner-up to automatically qualify for PyeongChang.

Kenworthy is still very likely to make the Olympic ski slopestyle team for a second straight time, but he wanted to be the first American to contest slope and pipe at the Games. That’s likely gone.

What we know: The three automatic Olympic halfpipe spots went to Sochi gold medalist David Wise, fellow Sochi Olympian Torin Yater-Wallace and first-time Olympian Alex Ferreira.

U.S. Ski & Snowboard can add a fourth man to the team via discretionary selection. It’s unlikely to be Kenworthy based on qualifying results. Kenworthy ranks sixth in the standings overall.

The man with the best credentials is Aaron Blunck, a Sochi Olympian and reigning X Games champ who made two podiums among the five selection events.

Another strong option is Kyle Smaine, the surprise winner of the fifth and final qualifier Friday night. But Smaine doesn’t have a finish better than seventh from the other four qualifiers.

Kenworthy has two ski slopestyle qualifiers Saturday and Sunday in Mammoth, after which the Olympic team will be named.

He is stronger in slopestyle than halfpipe, earning silver in Sochi and at the 2017 World Championships in the former. Kenworthy missed the Sochi team in halfpipe.

In women’s ski halfpipe on Friday, Devin Logan and Brita Sigourney joined Sochi gold medalist Maddie Bowman on the Olympic team.

Sigourney won the fifth and final Olympic selection event with a 91.20-point run, edging Bowman (89.80) and Logan (83.80).

Logan, the Sochi ski slopestyle silver medalist, is very likely to make the Olympic team in both halfpipe and slopestyle, which no man or woman did in Sochi.

One more discretionary Olympic women’s halfpipe spot could be awarded, likely to Sochi Olympian Annalisa Drew or Carly Margulies, who both missed the podium Friday night.

U.S. Olympic Qualifying Standings
Ski Halfpipe 
(through five of five events)
Three skiers can auto qualify per gender; up to four named to Olympic team
1. David Wise — 200** QUALIFIED
2. Alex Ferreira — 180** QUALIFIED
3. Torin Yater-Wallace — 160** QUALIFIED

4. Aaron Blunck — 140** (2nd and 3rd)
5. Kyle Smaine — 136* (1st and 7th)
6. Gus Kenworthy — 116* (2nd and 7th)

1. Brita Sigourney — 180** QUALIFIED
2. Maddie Bowman — 160** QUALIFIED

3. Devin Logan — 140** QUALIFIED

4. Annalisa Drew — 95 (4th and 5th)
5. Carly Margulies — 90 (4th and 6th)
**Has automatic qualifying minimum of two top-three results.
*Has one top-three result.

Mammoth Finals (all times Eastern)
Friday

Ski Halfpipe — 9:30-11 p.m. (NBCSports.com/live, NBC Sports app)

Saturday
Ski Slopestyle (#1) — 12:30-2 p.m. (NBCSports.com/live, NBC Sports app)
Snowboard Slopestyle — 5-6 p.m. (NBC, NBCSports.com/live, NBC Sports app)
Snowboard Halfpipe — 9:30-11 p.m. (NBCSports.com/live, NBC Sports app)

Sunday
Ski Slopestyle (#2) — 4:30-6 p.m. (NBCSports.com/live, NBC Sports app)

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VIDEO: Shaun White scores perfect 100 to qualify for Olympics

Christian Coleman breaks world indoor 60m record (video)

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Christian Coleman is the fastest man of all time — indoors.

The 21-year-old U.S. sprinter broke the world indoor 60m record by clocking 6.37 seconds at his first meet of 2018 in South Carolina on Friday night.

Maurice Greene, the 2000 Olympic 100m champion, held the previous record of 6.39, which he clocked in 1998 and 2001.

The record must still go through ratification procedures, which requires a drug test at the meet.

The 60m is the indoor equivalent of the outdoor 100m. They are the shortest sprints contested at their respective world championships.

Coleman, a 4x100m prelim relay runner at the Rio Olympics, has blossomed into arguably the early 2020 Olympic 100m favorite.

He most memorably clocked a 40-yard dash of 4.12 seconds last spring, which is one tenth faster than the NFL Combine record.

Then in August, Coleman took 100m silver behind Justin Gatlin at the world outdoor championships, beating Usain Bolt in the Jamaican’s final individual race.

There are no world outdoor championships this year, but Coleman could go for the world indoor 60m title in Birmingham, Great Britain, in March.

Coleman’s mark is the first men’s world record in an event contested at a world championships since Wayde van Niekerk broke Michael Johnson‘s 400m world record at the Rio Olympics.

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