Women’s Sports Foundation announces finalists for Sportswoman of the Year awards

Missy Franklin

Olympic champions like Missy Franklin and future Olympic stars like Amanda Kessel are among the finalists for the Women’s Sports Foundation’s Sportswoman of the Year awards.

Franklin, who won six gold medals at the World Swimming Championships, leads eight finalists for the award for women in individual sports. You can vote here.

Other finalists include figure skater Mao Asada, who won bronze at the World Championships (note gold medalist Yuna Kim is not a finalist), snowboarder Kelly Clark, who won the superpipe at the Winter X Games, and Alpine skier Tina Maze, who broke the record for most points scored in a World Cup season in 2012-13.

There’s also Paralympic track and field athlete Tatyana McFadden, who won a record six golds at the IPC Athletics World Championships in July, pole vaulter Jenn Suhr, the silver medalist at the World Championships, and world No. 1 tennis player Serena Williams and golfer Inbee Park.

The Sportswoman of the Year finalists for a team sport include Kessel, the NCAA women’s hockey player of the year who scored the deciding goal in the gold-medal game of the World Championships. You can vote for the team sport award here.

Kessel is joined by world champion bobsledders Kaillie Humphries and Chelsea Valois, basketball player Candace Parker, Brazilian beach volleyball players Talita and Taiana, sitting volleyball player Katie Holloway and water polo player Melissa Seideman.

Here are the past winners of the Women’s Sports Foundation awards:

Gabby Douglas (2012)
Yani Tseng
Yuna Kim
Courtney Kupets
Nastia Liukin
Lorena Ochoa
Melanie Troxel
Erin Popovich
Annika Sorenstam
Natalie Coughlin
Sarah Hughes
Stacy Dragila
Jenny Thompson
Juli Inkster
Michelle Kwan
Gail Devers
Amy Van Dyken
Bonnie Blair
Bonnie Blair
Julie Krone

Alex Morgan (2012)
Abby Wambach
Katie O’Donnell
Jessie Vetter
Jessica Mendoza
Monica Abbott
Misty May-Treanor & Kerri Walsh
Cat Osterman
Misty May-Treanor & Kerri Walsh
Lisa Leslie
Sue Bird
Lisa Leslie
Serena & Venus Williams
Mia Hamm
Cynthia Cooper
Mia Hamm
Teresa Edwards
Rebecca Lobo
Lisa Fernandez
Sheryl Swoopes

Jackie Chan supports sport bidding for 2020 Olympic inclusion

South Korea’s first gold medalist of 2018 PyeongChang Olympics to compete for China

Lim Hyo-Jun

Lim Hyo-Jun, a short track speed skater who won South Korea’s first gold medal of the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics, has been cleared to skate for China and was reportedly named to the national team Monday.

Lim, who won the 1500m on the first day of medal competition at the PyeongChang Games, began the process of switching to China after a June 2019 incident where he pulled down a teammate’s trousers, leaving him standing, exposed, in front of female teammates.

Lim, the 2019 World overall champion, was banned from the team for a year and later found guilty of sexual harassment before the verdict was overturned on appeal.

It was reported in March 2021 that Lim was in the process of trying to gain Chinese nationality to compete at the Beijing Winter Olympics, but Lim was not cleared to switch by the International Skating Union until this July. His Chinese name is Lin Xiaojun.

Another star South Korean skater, triple 2006 Olympic gold medalist Ahn Hyun-Soo, switched to Russia after not making the 2010 Olympic team. He then won three golds for the host nation as Viktor Ahn at the 2014 Sochi Games.

China’s national team for the upcoming season reportedly does not include veterans Wu Dajing, the nation’s lone gold medalist across all sports at the 2018 Olympics, and Fan Kexin, a three-time Olympic medalist.

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Brigid Kosgei, world record holder, to miss London Marathon

Brigid Kosgei

World record holder Brigid Kosgei withdrew before Sunday’s London Marathon due to a right hamstring injury that has bothered her for the last month.

“My training has been up and down and not the way I would like to prepare to be in top condition,” was posted on Kosgei’s social media. “We’ve decided it’s best I withdraw from this year’s race and get further treatment on my injuries in order to enter 2023 stronger than ever.”

Kosgei, a 28-year-old Kenyan mother of twins, shattered the world record by 81 seconds at the 2019 Chicago Marathon. She clocked 2:14:04 to smash Brit Paula Radcliffe‘s record from 2003.

Since, Kosgei won the 2020 London Marathon, took silver at the Tokyo Olympics, placed fourth at the 2021 London Marathon and won this past March’s Tokyo Marathon in what was then the third-fastest time in history (2:16:02).

Ethiopian Tigist Assefa moved into the top three by winning the Berlin Marathon last Sunday in 2:15:37.

The London Marathon women’s field includes Kenyan Joyciline Jepkosgei, a winner in New York City (2019) and London (2021), and Yalemzerf Yehualaw, who was the Ethiopian record holder until Assefa won in Berlin.

The men’s field is headlined by Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele, the second-fastest male marathoner in history, and Brit Mo Farah, a four-time Olympic champion on the track.

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