Canada earns first women’s swimming world title as oldest world record falls

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Oh Canada, the drought is over.

Kylie Masse became the first Canadian female swimmer to win a world title, breaking the 100m backstroke world record at the world championships in Budapest on Tuesday.

Masse, 21, clocked 58.10, relegating American Kathleen Baker to silver by .48. Baker took silver and Masse bronze in Rio behind Hungarian Katinka Hosszu.

Baker led after 50 meters in Budapest, but Masse had the fastest second half by .48 to nab the world record by .02.

She wiped the longest-standing women’s world record off the books from Great Britain’s Gemma Spofforth at the 2009 Worlds.

Australian Emily Seebohm, who swept the 2015 Worlds backstrokes, took bronze Tuesday.

Masse ended a prolonged Canadian women’s swimming drought at worlds. Canadian women won 18 world medals before this year, but all were silver and bronze.

Two Canadian women — Anne Ottenbrite and Penny Oleksiak — have won Olympic gold.

Women’s 100m Backstroke Results
Gold: Kylie Masse (CAN) — 58.10

Silver: Kathleen Baker (USA) — 58.58
Bronze: Emily Seebohm (AUS) — 58.59
4. Olivia Smoliga (USA) — 58.77
5. Anastasiia Fesikova (RUS) — 58.83
6. Daria Ustinova (RUS) — 59.50
7. Simona Baumrtova (CZE) — 59.71
8. Kathleen Dawson (GBR) — 59.90

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World downhill champion Ilka Stuhec tears ACL

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Lindsey Vonn’s top rival for downhill gold is in danger of missing the upcoming Olympics.

Ilka Stuhec, a world champion Alpine skier from Slovenia, suffered a torn ACL after a practice crash in Austria this weekend.

Stuhec had become a strong medal favorite for PyeongChang after winning FIS World Cup titles in downhill and Alpine combined last season. She also won a gold medal in downhill at the 2017 World Championships, where Vonn placed third.

According to a post on the FIS website, surgery is set for this Wednesday, with more information to come after that. But preliminary reports suggest that she is likely to miss the Olympics.

“For now it looks like Ilka Stuhec will have to miss a large part or maybe the whole World Cup season, including the Winter Olympic Games in South Korea,” a spokesperson for Struhec told Reuters.

In a tweet, Struhec acknowledged that she would be sidelined “for a few months.”

The Olympics start in less than four months.

 

U.S. Ski & Snowboard mourns after 17-year-old aerials skier found dead

U.S. Ski & Snowboard
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Mikey Lillis, a 17-year-old aerials skier, died in his sleep at his home in East Rochester, N.Y., overnight Saturday, according to U.S. Ski & Snowboard.

“We are a family, and as a family our entire team grieves for Mikey, his own family and his teammates,” U.S. Ski & Snowboard President and CEO Tiger Shaw said in a statement. “We’ll remember him for the pathway he was following and the goals he was beginning to achieve. Our condolences go out to his parents Bernie and Jamie and the entire Lillis family.”

Lillis was working his way to join his two older brothers at the elite international level. He made three podiums on the Nor-Am Cup tour between the last two seasons.

Jon Lillis, 23, is the reigning world champion in aerials. Chris Lillis, 19, won the FIS Rookie of the Year award last season with four top-10 finishes on the World Cup.