Mao Asada

Mao Asada signs up for marathon


Mao Asada, an Olympic silver medalist and three-time world champion figure skater, will tackle a different athletic challenge on Dec. 10 — the Honolulu Marathon.

The 5-foot-3, 27-year-old retired from figure skating in April and decided on the marathon in September, according to Sports Nippon.

Honolulu Marathon officials confirmed that Asada is entered.

Asada said her goal is to break 4 hours, 30 minutes, to beat her older sister Mai’s time from the Nagoya Marathon in March, according to the newspaper.

Asada took silver at the 2010 Vancouver Games behind Yuna Kim. She won world titles in 2008, 2010 and 2014.

The Honolulu Marathon is sponsored by Japan Airlines, which has put Asada’s image on the side of a plane. producer Rachel Lutz contributed to this report.

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Team USA Opening Ceremony uniforms have heaters

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The U.S. Olympic team uniforms for the PyeongChang Opening Ceremony contain heating components that will last up to 11 hours.

Ice dancers Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani and bobsledder Aja Evans wore the uniforms on TODAY on Monday.

The heat technology will come in handy.

The PyeongChang Opening Ceremony on Feb. 9 (live streaming on and the NBC Sports app) will be in an outdoor stadium, likely in below-freezing temperatures.

From USA Today:

“The athletes can set the temperature (there are three settings) via their cellphones. The heat can last up to five hours on the high setting and 11 hours on the low setting, fully charged.”

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Jamaica misses Olympic men’s bobsled by one spot

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The only Jamaican bobsled team in PyeongChang will be its women’s bobsled team.

Jamaica missed qualifying a two-man bobsled team for the Olympics by one spot in rankings finalized last week.

Jamaica still had a chance to sneak into the 30-sled Olympic field if one of the qualified nations declined a spot, but that didn’t happen.

The International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation made it official Monday, publishing the Olympic fields for each event.

At least one Jamaican men’s sled competed in every Olympics from 1988 through 2002, then again in 2014.

Sochi driver Winston Watts retired, but a new team was formed in this Olympic cycle that included former Green Bay Packers and Cincinnati Bengals running back Michael Blair.

New driver Seldwyn Morgan competed on the lower-level North American Cup the last three seasons with a top finish of seventh.

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