Gwen Jorgensen wins 9th straight World Triathlon Series race

Gwen Jorgensen
0 Comments

Gwen Jorgensen extended her unprecedented World Triathlon Series winning streak to nine races, prevailing by 73 seconds in Yokohama, Japan, on Saturday.

The 2012 Olympian notched her 12th career win in 28 World Triathlon Series starts. She hasn’t lost a WTS race since April 26, 2014. She extended the longest men’s or women’s win streak in series history (the series started in 2009), a run that started in Yokohama last year.

“The whole race hurt, it hurt a lot,” Jorgensen said in a finish-area interview on a rainy day in Yokohama. “Every race I get very nervous.”

Can she go through a season unbeaten?

“That is a strange question,” she said, laughing, after her fourth win of 2015, with no more than five WTS events left this year. “I can’t control what the other girls do. All I can do is do my best in everything, and if somebody beats me, that’s awesome.”

Pre-WTS, Australian Emma Carney and Portugual’s Vanessa Fernandes were unbeaten across 12 straight International Triathlon Union World Cup races, but they lost separate World Championships races during those streaks.

On Saturday, Jorgensen was 16 seconds behind the leader after the opening 1500m swim and was in the lead group after the 40km bike. Jorgensen is unquestionably the best runner in the sport, perhaps in its history.

She set the standard again on her feet in the 10km on Saturday, pulling away in the first few kilometers and having the win wrapped up before the fourth and final lap, high-fiving fans on the final straightaway. She was 1:19 faster in the 10km than anybody else in the field.

Australian Ashleigh Gentle was a distant second place, her first World Triathlon Series podium. Australian Emma Moffatt was third (full results here).

The other top triathletes this season — Americans Katie Zaferes and Sarah True — were not in the field in Yokohama.

Jorgensen is a heavy favorite to become the first U.S. Olympic triathlon champion at Rio 2016. The sport debuted at the Olympics at Sydney 2000. Jorgensen, a former Ernst & Young accountant who started competing in triathlons in 2010, finished 38th at the London Olympics, deflated by a flat tire on the bike.

The World Triathlon Series continues with a stop in London in two weeks.

Justin Gatlin runs world’s fastest 100m since August 2012

In a tie, Wendy Holdener puts to rest a remarkable stat in Alpine skiing

0 Comments

Swiss Wendy Holdener ended one of the most remarkable victory droughts in sports by tying for the win with Swede Anna Swenn Larsson in a World Cup slalom in Killington, Vermont, on Sunday.

Holdener, after 15 second-place finishes and 15 third-place finishes in her career, stood on the top step of a World Cup slalom podium for the first time. She shared it with Swenn Larsson, who had six World Cup slalom podiums before Sunday and also earned her first win.

They beat Austrian Katharina Truppe by .22 of a second combining times from two runs.

ALPINE SKIING: Full Results | Broadcast Schedule

Holdener, 29, previously won three World Cups in other disciplines, plus two world championships in the combined and Olympic and world titles in the team event.

“To be tied first when I came into the finish was such a relief,” Holdener said while shoulder to shoulder with Swenn Larsson. “On the end, it’s perfect, because now we can share our first win together.”

Mikaela Shiffrin had the best first-run time but lost her lead midway through the second run and finished fifth. Shiffrin, who won the first two slaloms this season last weekend, was bidding for a 50th World Cup slalom victory and a sixth win in six slaloms in Killington.

“I fought. I think some spots I got a little bit off my timing, but I was pushing, and that’s slalom,” she said before turning her attention to Holdener and Swenn Larsson. “It’s a pretty special day, actually.”

The women’s Alpine skiing World Cup moves next weekend to Lake Louise, Alberta, with two downhills and a super-G.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Injured Ilia Malinin wins Grand Prix Finland, qualifies for Grand Prix Final

Ilia Malinin
Getty
0 Comments

Ilia Malinin, competing “a little bit injured” this week, still won Grand Prix Finland and goes into the Grand Prix Final in two weeks as the world’s top-ranked male singles skater.

Malinin, who was second after Friday’s short program, landed four clean quadruple jumps in Saturday’s free skate to overtake Frenchman Kevin Aymoz.

Malinin, who landed a quad flip in competition for the first time, according to SkatingScores.com, also attempted a quad Axel to open his program, but spun out of the landing and put his hand down on the ice.

Malinin also won his previous two starts this season in come-from-behind fashion. The 17-year-old world junior champion became the first skater to land a clean, fully rotated quad Axel in September, then did it again in October at Skate America, where he posted the world’s top overall score this season.

Next, Malinin can become the second-youngest man to win the Grand Prix Final after Russian Yevgeny Plushenko. His biggest competition is likely to be world champion Shoma Uno of Japan, who like Malinin won both of his Grand Prix starts this fall. Malinin and Uno have not gone head-to-head this season.

Grand Prix Finland highlights air on NBC, NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. ET.

FIGURE SKATING: Results | Broadcast Schedule

Earlier, Japan’s Mai Mihara overtook world silver medalist Loena Hendrickx of Belgium to become the only woman to win both of her Grand Prix starts this season. Mihara prevailed by .23 of a point. The top three women this season by best total score are Japanese, led by a junior skater, 14-year-old Mao Shimada, who isn’t Olympic age-eligible until 2030.

Mihara and Hendrickx qualified for the Grand Prix Final, joining world champion Kaori Sakamoto and Rinka Watanabe, both of Japan, South Korean Yelim Kim and American Isabeau Levito, the world junior champion.

Italians Rebecca Ghilardi and Filippo Ambrosini won both pairs’ programs and qualified for their first Grand Prix Final.

Japan’s Riku Miura and Ryuichi Kihara and Americans Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier headline the Final. Both pairs won each of their Grand Prix starts earlier this fall. The Japanese have the world’s two best scores this season. The Americans are reigning world champions.

At least one Russian or Chinese pair made every Grand Prix Final podium — usually pairs from both countries — but neither nation competed in pairs this Grand Prix season. All Russian skaters are banned due to the war in Ukraine. China’s lone entry on the Grand Prix across all disciplines was an ice dance couple.

Canadians Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier improved on their world-leading score for this season in winning the ice dance by 17.03 points over Americans Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker. Both couples qualified for the Grand Prix Final in the absence of all three Olympic medalists this fall.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!