Shani Davis

What to watch on Day 5 of Sochi Olympics

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Here’s a look at the compelling events, athletes and storylines of the Sochi Olympics on Wednesday, Feb. 12. A complete list of every Wednesday event can be found here.

WHAT TO STAY UP LATE FOR …

Women’s downhill, 2 a.m. ET — CLICK HERE TO WATCH EVENT LIVE

Julia Mancuso became a medal favorite here by winning the downhill portion of the super combined Monday en route to a bronze medal. If she makes the podium again, she will match Bode Miller for the most career U.S. Olympic Alpine medals (five).

The favorite, though, is Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch, who won the super combined. Hoefl-Riesch is the World Cup overall and downhill leader and looks to win her fourth Olympic medal, all gold.

Liechtenstein’s Tina Weirather, second to Hoefl-Riesch in the World Cup standings, suffered a shin bruise in a training crash Sunday.

Four different women were fastest in the four training runs. None of them were Mancuso, Hoefl-Riesch or Weirather.

WHAT TO WAKE UP EARLY FOR …

Nordic combined normal hill, 4:30 a.m. ET — CLICK HERE TO WATCH EVENT LIVE

Can the U.S. rediscover its magic from the 2010 Olympics? Four years ago Americans won twice as many Nordic combined medals (four) than any other nation, despite coming in with zero medals in the sport in Olympic history.

The U.S. would not be expected to win any medals here if results this past season are any indication. But keep an eye out for Bill Demong, who won the large hill event in 2010.

The medal favorites are German Eric Frenzel, seeking his first individual Olympic medal, defending champion Jason Lamy-Chappuis of France and anybody in a Norwegian uniform.

U.S.-Canada women’s hockey, 7:30 a.m. ET — CLICK HERE TO WATCH EVENT LIVE

This game means little on paper, but the deep-rooted rivalry says otherwise. The two dominant women’s hockey nations go at it in their final group-play game.

They will both advance straight to opposite semifinals regardless of Wednesday’s result. That makes this matchup reminiscent of women’s hockey’s debut at the 1998 Olympics.

In Nagano, the U.S. and Canada played a preliminary game already knowing they would play again three days later for the gold medal. Canada went up 4-1, but the U.S. scored six goals in the final 13 minutes to win 7-4. The U.S. then went on to win the gold medal 3-1.

Canada has won every gold medal since but enters Wednesday’s matchup on a four-game losing streak to the U.S. since the shock resignation of coach Dan Church. Its new coach is longtime NHL player and coach Kevin Dineen.

The U.S. and Canada have combined to beat bronze-medal contenders Finland and Switzerland 20-1 in four games. Neither the U.S. nor Canada will play again until the semifinals Monday.

Speed skating men’s 1000m, 9 a.m. ET — CLICK HERE TO WATCH EVENT LIVE

Shani Davis skates in his best event.

With a medal of any color, Davis will tie the record for most career U.S. Olympic men’s speed skating medals (five) with Eric Heiden and Chad Hedrick.

Davis’ biggest competition will come from countryman Brian Hansen, 2013 world champion Kazakh Denis Kuzin and the Netherlands’ Michel Mulder and Kjeld Nuis. Mulder won the 500m on Monday.

WHAT YOU CAN’T MISS DURING THE DAY …

Figure skating pairs free skate, 10:45 a.m. ET — CLICK HERE TO WATCH EVENT LIVE

Russians Tatyana Volozoshar and Maksim Trankov lead Germans Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy after the short program, seeking to restore the host nation’s dominance in the event.

Soviet, Unified Team and Russian pairs won gold at every Olympics from 1964 through 2006, but none were on the podium in 2010.

The two U.S. pairs are in ninth and 14th place and will not end an American medal drought dating to 1988.

Snowboard women’s halfpipe final, 12:30 p.m. ET — CLICK HERE TO WATCH EVENT LIVE

American Kelly Clark is the favorite here, assuming she makes it through qualification to the 12-woman final.

Clark is the greatest women’s halfpipe snowboarder of all time with 2002 Olympic gold, 2010 Olympic bronze and five Winter X Games titles, including the last four.

She’s set to be challenged by 2010 Olympic champion Torah Bright of Australia and U.S. teammates 2006 Olympic champion Hannah Teter, 2013 world champion Arielle Gold and Kaitlyn Farrington.

Danielle Perkins is first U.S. boxer to win world title in 3 years

Danielle Perkins
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Danielle Perkins became the U.S.’ first world champion boxer in this Olympic cycle, taking the heavyweight crown in Russia on Sunday.

Perkins, a 37-year-old who played college basketball at George Mason and St. John’s, improved from bronze in 2018 to earn her first world title, blanking defending world champion Yang Xiaoli of China 5-0 in Sunday’s final.

Video of the bout is here.

Perkins was slated to fight Yang in the 2018 World semifinals but withdrew due to medical reasons, according to USA Boxing.

The heavyweight division is 81+kg, but the heaviest Olympic weight division is capped at 75kg.

The last American to earn a world title was Claressa Shields in 2016, before she repeated as Olympic champion in Rio and moved to the professional ranks.

The Olympic trials are in December in Louisiana, after which winners will fight internationally in early 2020 in bids to qualify for the Tokyo Games.

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MORE: IOC strips Olympic status from boxing body AIBA

Brigid Kosgei shatters marathon world record in Chicago

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Kenyan Brigid Kosgei shattered a 16-year-old world record in the women’s marathon by 81 seconds, winning the Chicago Marathon in 2:14:04 on Sunday.

Brit Paula Radcliffe had held the record of 2:15:25 set at the 2003 London Marathon. Kenyan Mary Keitany holds the female-only record of 2:17:01 from the 2017 London Marathon. Both Kosgei and Radcliffe, the only women to break 2:17, ran with men in their record races.

Radcliffe’s record was the longest-standing for the men’s or women’s marathon of the last 50 years.

Kosgei did it one day after Eliud Kipchoge became the first person to run a sub-two-hour marathon in a non-record-eligible event in Vienna. She won by a gaping 6 minutes, 47 seconds over Ethiopian Ababel Yeshaneh.

Kosgei, who won Chicago in 2018 and the London Marathon in April, came in highly favored. The 25-year-old tuned up with the fastest half-marathon ever by a woman (by 23 seconds) on Sept. 8 on a non-record-eligible course.

“2:10 is possible for a lady,” Kosgei said after Sunday’s record.

Jordan Hasay, the top U.S. woman in the field, stopped after feeling a sharp hamstring strain after two miles. Hasay, who was coached by Alberto Salazar before his ban in a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency case, is one of several women in contention for the three Olympic spots at the Feb. 29 trials in Atlanta.

Kenyan Lawrence Cherono won the men’s race by one second over Ethiopian Dejene Debela in 2:05:45.

The U.S.’ top marathoner, Galen Rupp, dropped out around mile 23 after straining a calf around the sixth mile. Rupp, who was also coached by Salazar, was racing for the first time since the 2018 Chicago Marathon and Achilles surgery.

Mo Farah, the defending champion and four-time Olympic track gold medalist, finished eighth in 2:09:58. He also dropped from the leaders before the halfway point.

American Daniel Romanchuk and Swiss Manuela Schar won the wheelchair races.

Romanchuk, 21, repeated as champion. He has also won Boston London and New York City in the last year. Schar distanced decorated American Tatyana McFadden by 4:14, though McFadden did qualify for the Tokyo Paralympics with her runner-up finish (as did Romanchuk).

The fall major marathon season concludes with the New York City Marathon on Nov. 3, featuring defending champions Mary Keitany and Lelisa Desisa and 2018 Boston Marathon champion Des Linden.

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MORE: Chicago Marathon results