Olympic Torch Relay Camel

Camel carries Olympic flame during Sochi torch relay

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A procession of two-humped camels highlighted the Sochi Olympic torch relay’s visit to the city of Chelyabinsk on Tuesday.

One of the camels, Barsik, carried torchbearer Evgeny Zemskov, a motocross racer, through the city center in five-degree weather, according to R-Sport.

Chelyabinsk was the site above which a meteor exploded on Feb. 15. The flame was also set to visit Traktor Arena, which was damaged by the meteorite.

Athletes who win Olympic events on Feb. 15, 2014, will be offered supplemental medals with bits of the meteorite inserted into them, it was reported in July.

Camels are significant in Chelyabinsk. Just look at its flag.

Voice of Russia provides more context:

The camel is regarded as Chelyabinsk’s symbol for more than 200 years. Starting from the late 18th century, the animal has been depicted on the city’s emblem, emphasizing the importance of Chelyabinsk as a trade center. In 2002, the camel appeared on the emblem of the Chelyabinsk region. Camels can be seen at most of the important public events in Chelyabinsk. One even has a chance to ride a camel or take a picture with it in the city’s parks.

Sochi Olympic torchbearer dies after carrying flame

Alysa Liu rallies to win Junior Grand Prix with another quadruple jump

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U.S. figure skating champion Alysa Liu landed a quadruple Lutz for a second straight Junior Grand Prix, rallying from fourth after the short program to win an event in Poland on Friday.

Liu, who in January became the youngest U.S. champion in history at age 13, won both of her starts in her first season on the Junior Grand Prix to become the first U.S. woman to qualify for the six-skater Junior Grand Prix Final since 2013 (Polina Edmunds and Karen Chen). The Final is held with the senior Grand Prix Final in Turin, Italy, in December.

She won Friday by 6.63 points by surpassing a pair of Russians, a rarity in this era. Her free skate is here.

Liu trailed by 4.03 points after doubling a planned triple loop in the short program. She was the lone skater in the field to attempt a triple Axel (landing three of them, including two in combination and one with a negative grade of execution) or a quad.

Liu tallied 138.99 points in the free skate and 203.10 overall. She ranks sixth in the world this season by best total scores among junior and senior skaters, though some top skaters have yet to compete.

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Rafaela Silva, first Brazilian gold medalist at Rio Olympics, claims innocence after positive drug test

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Rafaela Silva, the judoka who grew up in Rio’s most famously violent favela to become Brazil’s first gold medalist at the Rio Olympics, reportedly tested positive for a banned substance last month.

Silva tested positive for fenoterol, a substance that can be legal to treat asthma if an athlete has a therapeutic use exemption (TUE). Silva did not have a TUE before testing positive at the Pan American Games in August, according to Brazilian media.

A possible punishment has not been announced.

Silva claimed innocence at a news conference Friday afternoon, saying that a young child with whom she had bodily contact at her training location used the substance, and she plans to compete at a domestic event this weekend, according to O Globo.

Silva, 27, backed up her Rio Olympic 57kg title by taking bronze at the world championships later in August. If she is punished for the positive test, Silva could lose that bronze medal, though she said Friday that she had a clean drug test at worlds, according to O Globo.

Silva, from Rio’s Ciadade de Deus favela, has the Olympic rings tattooed on her right bicep with the inscription “God knows how much I’ve suffered and what I’ve done to get here.”

Brazil’s top female swimmer, Etiene Medeiros, reportedly tested positive for fenoterol in May 2016 but was cleared to compete at the Rio Olympics.

In PyeongChang, Slovenian hockey player Ziga Jeglic tested positive for fenoterol and was scratched before his nation’s last game before it was announced. Jeglic was suspended from the Games and, later, was suspended eight months.

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