Usain Bolt wins 200m in Ostrava; David Rudisha injured

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Usain Bolt won his second 200m race in the last 21 months, clocking 20.13 on a rained-on track in Ostrava, Czech Republic, on Tuesday.

Bolt’s time ranks him fourth fastest in the world this year in the 200m and was .07 faster than his time on April 11, his first 200m since August 2013.

“It was a little bit colder than I thought it would be,” Bolt told an on-track reporter. “It’s all about working on my technique, getting back into shape.”

The Ostrava field included zero of the expected top challengers to Bolt at the World Championships in Beijing on Aug. 29.

Earlier, Olympic 800m champion and world-record holder David Rudisha pulled up early in a 600m race, holding the front of his right thigh. Rudisha pulled a muscle, but the injury was not very serious, according to the Kenyan’s Twitter.

Rudisha, 26, went more than one year between races in 2013 and 2014 due to a right knee injury and returned to be the fifth fastest man in the world in the 800m last year.

Also Tuesday, Asafa Powell won a 100m in 10.04 seconds with a small headwind, well off his 9.84 from May 9.

Bolt ran a total of 400 meters in competition last season, one shortened due to foot surgery.

Bolt’s 200m world record from 2009 is 19.19, a mark he has said he hopes to break.

Bolt is scheduled to race at the Adidas Grand Prix in New York on June 13 (NBC, 1-3 p.m. ET).

Bolt’s biggest rival, American Justin Gatlin, is scheduled to race a 200m at the Prefontaine Classic in Eugene, Ore., on Saturday (3:30-4:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN; 4:30-6 on NBC).

Gatlin clocked 19.68 and 19.71 in 200m races in 2014, the fastest times in the world since Bolt ran 19.66 to win the 2013 World Championship.

Usain Bolt drops in world’s marketable athletes rankings

WATCH LIVE: Nathan Chen in U.S. Figure Skating Championships free skate

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Nathan Chen tries to become the first man to win four straight U.S. figure skating titles since 1988, live on NBC Sports on Sunday.

NBC Sports Gold streams live coverage of the men’s free skate for subscribers starting at 2:30 p.m. ET in Greensboro, N.C. NBC joins with TV coverage at 3.

LIVE STREAM: Men’s Free Skate — Gold | NBC | Skate Order

Chen, a 20-year-old Yale sophomore, is undefeated since placing fifth at the PyeongChang Olympics. He can become the seventh man since World War II to win four straight national titles.

Five of the previous six went on to earn Olympic gold, including Dick ButtonScott Hamilton and, most recently, Brian Boitano in 1988.

Chen carries a substantial 13.14-point lead from Saturday’s short program, where he landed two quadruple jumps on one week of full training following a flu bout.

The anticipated drama Sunday comes in the battle for silver and bronze medals and the last two world championships team spots.

Jason BrownAndrew TorgashevVincent Zhou and Tomoki Hiwatashi are separated by 8.78 points. Brown, the 2015 U.S. champion, and Zhou, the 2019 World bronze medalist, are the only men in the field other than Chen with world team experience.

Key Skate Times
5:01 p.m. (ET) — Vincent Zhou
5:18 — Tomoki Hiwatashi
5:26 — Andrew Torgashev
5:35 — Nathan Chen
5:43 — Jason Brown

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As a reminder, you can watch the events from the 2019-20 figure skating season live and on-demand with the ‘Figure Skating Pass’ on NBC Sports Gold. Go to NBCsports.com/gold/figure-skating to sign up for access to every ISU Grand Prix and championship event, as well as domestic U.S. Figure Skating events throughout the season. NBC Sports Gold gives subscribers an unprecedented level of access on more platforms and devices than ever before.

Mikaela Shiffrin, with 66th World Cup win, moves one shy of career dream

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Mikaela Shiffrin has said one of her career dreams is to win in every discipline in one season. She is now one victory shy of realizing it.

Shiffrin earned her 66th World Cup victory — and her second in three days — at a super-G in Bansko, Bulgaria, on Sunday.

She prevailed by .29 of a second over Italian Marta Bassino and .70 over Swiss Lara Gut-Behrami. Gut-Behrami, the last skier other than Shiffrin to win a World Cup overall title back in 2016, earned her first podium in exactly one year.

Full results are here.

“Perfect weekend for me,” said Shiffrin, who moved one shy of recently retired Austrian Marcel Hirscher for third place on the World Cup career wins list. “The whole team is excited about the whole weekend, but especially today.”

She is en route to a fourth straight World Cup overall title. And she is a combined victory away from wins in all five disciplines in one season. Only Marc GirardelliPetra KronbergerJanica Kostelic and Tina Maze have done it.

“The thing that I’m most proud of right now is that I know how to win in slalom, [giant slalom], super-G and downhill, which I never expected that would really happen,” she said.

Shiffrin struggled with confidence during a winless stretch in early January, trying not to compare herself to last season, when she won a record 17 times. She still leads the men’s and women’s tours with six victories this season, a little more than halfway through.

“Every race is such a big fight, and I haven’t been the one on top of this fight every time,” she said. “Certainly I’ve been like sometimes the expectations that I have or that other people might have, I’m not quite living up to that. Sometimes it’s hard not to feel like I’m failing sometimes, even though this is still just an incredible season.”

There are two combined races left this season for Shiffrin to achieve the dream — Feb. 23 in Switzerland and March 1 in Italy. While combined — mixing a speed run and a technical run — might seem perfect for Shiffrin, she has one victory in four starts in the discipline between the World Cup and Olympics.

And Shiffrin is careful about her race schedule. She is undecided on entering a downhill and super-G next weekend at the 2014 Olympic venue in Russia.

“After this weekend my brain is a little bit dead,” she joked.

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