Gracie Gold

Figure skating Grand Prix assignments announced

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Olympic bronze medalists Jeremy AbbottJason BrownGracie Gold and Ashley Wagner lead the U.S. entries for the 2014-15 Grand Prix figure skating season announced Friday.

Olympic champions Yuzuru HanyuAdelina Sotnikova and Tatyana Volosozhar and Maksim Trankov are also slated to dot across six events in the fall, beginning with Skate America in Chicago from Oct. 24-26. They’ll vie to qualify for the Grand Prix Final in Barcelona from Dec. 11-14.

Grand Prix assignments: Men | Women | Pairs | Ice Dance

Here are the U.S. assignments:

Skate America: Jeremy Abbott, Jason Brown, TBD; Gracie Gold, Mirai Nagasu, TBD; Alexa Scimeca/Chris Knierim, Haven Denney/Brandon Frazier, TBD; Maia Shibutani/Alex Shibutani, Madison Chock/Evan Bates, TBD.

Skate Canada: Max Aaron, Adam Rippon; Courtney Hicks, Ashley Wagner; Felicia Zhang/Nathan Bartholomay; Alexandra Aldridge/Daniel Eaton; Madison Hubbell/Zachary Donohue.

Cup of China: Richard Dornbush, Josh Farris; Ashley Cain, Polina Edmunds, Christina Gao; Tarah Kayne/Daniel O’Shea; Shibutani/Shibutani.

Rostelecom Cup: Aaron, Brown, Stephen Carriere; Vanessa Lam, Nagasu, Angela Wang; Denney/Frazier, Kayne/O’Shea, DeeDee Leng/Simon Shnapir; Aldridge/Eaton, Chock/Bates, Kaitlin Hawayek/Jean-Luc Baker.

Trophee Bompard: Dornbush, Rippon; Samantha Cesario, Hicks, Wagner; Scimeca/Knierim; Hubbell/Donohue.

NHK Trophy: Abbott, Farris, Ross Miner; Edmunds, Gao, Gold; Leng/Shnapir, Zheng/Bartholomay; Hawayek/Baker.

Japan’s Hanyu is in Cup of China (with Russian Maksim Kovtun and China’s Yan Han) and NHK Trophy with Abbott.

Olympic silver medalist Patrick Chan and four-time Olympic medalist Yevgeny Plushenko were not given Grand Prix assignments. Chan, 23, is uncertain of his future. Plushenko, 31, wants to compete again, following post-Olympic back surgery.

The 2010 Olympic champion Evan Lysacek is also out. He has not competed in more than four years but has not announced his retirement, either.

Russia’s Sotnikova is in Rostelecom Cup (with World Championships fourth-place finisher Anna Pogorilaya) and NHK Trophy (with Gold and Edmunds).

Volosozhar and Trankov are in Skate America and Cup of China.

Absent from the list are Olympic ice dance champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White, who previously announced they would sit out next season. Their longtime rivals, Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, were also not given assignments. Their future is unclear.

Very pregnant Alysia Montano runs at U.S. Championships

Watch Danell Leyva splash out of American Ninja Warrior

Danell Leyva
NBC
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Triple Olympic medalist Danell Leyva became the latest gymnast to appear on NBC’s “American Ninja Warrior,” splashing out of the “Leaps of Faith” in the latter portion of the course in the Los Angeles City Finals that aired Monday.

Leyva’s full run can be seen at the 44-minute mark here.

Leyva, a 27-year-old who took all-around bronze at the 2012 London Games and then retired with parallel bars and high bar silver in Rio, was cheered on by 2012 Olympic teammates Jonathan Horton and John Orozco. He previously completed the course at the Los Angeles City qualifier.

Horton has tackled ANW five times, according to the broadcast. Other gymnasts to appear on the show included Olympic all-around champions Nastia Liukin and Paul Hamm and, perhaps the show’s most famous competitor, former Towson University athlete Kacy Catanzaro.

Leyva could still make the Las Vegas finals, according to the broadcast.

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MORE: Japan’s gymnastics team for worlds lacks its superstars

Chinese 13-year-olds go 1-2 at diving worlds; U.S. medal drought ends

AP
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Reminiscent of one of its legendary divers, Chinese 13-year-olds took gold and silver in the women’s platform at the world diving championships on Wednesday. Delaney Schnell rallied for bronze, ending a 14-year U.S. medal drought.

Chen Yuxi and Lu Wei, both born in 2005, tallied 439 and 377.8 points, respectively, in Gwangju, South Korea. China is nine for nine in gold medals with four finals left this week. Schnell, who was in fifth place and 1.2 points back of third going into the last dive, ended up with 364.2.

No U.S. woman had earned an individual world platform medal since Laura Wilkinson‘s gold in 2005. Schnell, 20, was sixth at the 2016 Olympic trials and second at the 2017 World trials before placing 27th at her world debut two years ago.

Back in 1991, Chinese 12-year-old Fu Mingxia captured the world title on the platform. A year later, Fu took platform gold in Barcelona and remains the youngest Summer Olympic champion since 1960. Fu went on to win a Chinese record four individual Olympic diving titles.

Lu and Chen represent the next generation of Chinese female divers following the post-Rio retirements of their role model, Chen Ruolin, and Wu Minxia.

China is such a diving factory that it took gold and silver without the Rio Olympic platform champion, Ren Qian, who is not on this year’s world team. Ren, then 15 in Rio, became the youngest Olympic diving gold medalist since Fu.

China, two years after its least successful diving worlds since 2005, is moving closer to sweeping every gold medal at these worlds. They last accomplished the feat in 2011.

Earlier Wednesday, Chinese Xie Siyi (reigning world champion) and Cao Yuan (reigning Olympic champion) qualified first and second into Thursday’s men’s springboard final.

David Boudia, the 2012 U.S. Olympic platform champion, was a strong fourth in his first major international meet since Rio and switching to the springboard. Rio Olympian Michael Hixon also advanced in the 12th and last spot.

NBC Olympic Researcher Alex Azzi contributed to this report from Gwangju.

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