US Rowing investigating illnesses at World Junior Championships at Rio Olympic venue

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US Rowing is reviewing details of illnesses that 11 athletes suffered while at the Rio 2016 Olympic venue for the World Junior Championships last week, a spokesperson said Monday.

U.S. rowers suffered stomach illnesses with reports of vomiting and diarrhea, according to The Associated Press, amid concerns about water quality at the open-water venues for the Olympics next year.

The site of the World Junior Championships, Rodrigo de Freitas Lake, is also the site of the Olympic rowing competition next year.

US Rowing did not announce the source of the illnesses. It has experienced illnesses during team travel on other trips to well-known destinations, including recently in Italy when six athletes out of 25 became ill.

“It is sometimes difficult to determine the exact cause,” US Rowing Director of Communications Allison Frederick said in an email. “Our staff will be reviewing details of the illnesses to assess the areas of risk and future protocol.”

The head of rowing’s international governing body, FISA, said last week that he would ask for viral testing to be done at the lake in the run-up to the Olympics, according to the AP.

“USRowing has been assured by FISA that the lake was being tested every two days for the weeks leading up to the competition and that the results of those tests showed no significant number on E. coli,” Frederick said.

Earlier this month, triathletes competed at the Rio 2016 Olympic venue on Copacabana Beach. Afterward, no illnesses widely reported, but some athletes said they were concerned about the water quality.

On July 30, the U.S. Olympic Committee said it was collecting data on the water quality at the Rio Olympic open-water venues to determine precautionary measures for American athletes.

An Olympic sailing test event will be held at the Rio 2016 venue at Guanabara Bay from Aug. 15-22.

U.S. Olympic Sailing managing director Josh Adams said July 30 that US Sailing continues to view the Olympic venue at Guanabara Bay as a safe place to sail.

Rafael Nadal to miss U.S. Open; men’s, women’s singles fields named

Rafael Nadal
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Rafael Nadal is not entered in the U.S. Open, joining the recovering Roger Federer in missing the first Grand Slam tennis tournament since the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s the first time a Grand Slam tournament main draw will be missing both legends since the 1999 U.S. Open.

“The situation is very complicated worldwide, the COVID-19 cases are increasing, it looks like we still don’t have control of it,” was posted on Nadal’s social media. “This is a decision I never wanted to take, but I have decided to follow my heart this time and for the time being I rather not travel.”

The U.S. Open starts as scheduled Aug. 31 without fans. The rescheduled French Open, which Nadal has won a record 12 times, is scheduled to start two weeks after the U.S. Open ends. Nadal did not mention in Tuesday’s statement whether he planned to play Roland Garros.

Nadal won his fourth U.S. Open in 2019, defeating Russian Daniil Medvedev in a five-set final. That moved Nadal within one Grand Slam singles title of Federer’s record 20.

Federer previously announced he is out for the rest of 2020 following a right knee procedure.

U.S. Open Entry Lists: Men | Women

The U.S. Open fields are led by top-ranked Novak Djokovic and 23-time Grand Slam singles champion Serena Williams.

Other notable players not on main-draw entry lists published Tuesday: women’s No. 1 Ash Barty and 2016 U.S. Open winner Stan Wawrinka. Other than Barty, the top 28 women in the world rankings are entered, including defending champion Bianca Andreescu.

Djokovic, Dominic Thiem, Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas and Alexander Zverev are the top-ranked men in the field. Djokovic and 2014 U.S. Open champion Marin Cilic, plus first alternate (and wild-card candidate) Andy Murray, are the only male Grand Slam singles champions in the field.

VIDEO: Coco Gauff delivers speech for racial justice

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Why did Shaun White cut his hair? Carrot Top

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Shaun White said a revelatory chat with Carrot Top led to the Olympic snowboarding champion chopping off his flowing red locks more than seven years ago, according to a report.

“I went to an event in Vegas where I run into Carrot Top,” White wrote, according to a Bleacher Report AMA last Wednesday. “We were talking about our hair and he basically looked at me like you could see into his soul and he basically said he was stuck like this. And at that point it was like seeing the ghost of Christmas future. And at that point I was like omg I can change.”

White documented a meeting with Carrot Top on social media in September 2013, but that was 10 months after the haircut. They must have met in 2012, too.

White, formerly known as the Flying Tomato, posted video of the haircut in December 2012, saying he didn’t tell anybody beforehand. He had grown tired of the nickname.

He donated the hair to Locks of Love, which makes wigs for needy children.

White is known for charitable efforts for children, including with the Boys and Girls Clubs of America and the St. Jude Children’s Hospital. White was born with a heart defect called Tetralogy of Fallot, requiring two major surgeries before his first birthday.

White, a 33-year-old who recently changed his hair color to blond, announced in February that he ended a bid to make the first U.S. Olympic skateboarding team for the Tokyo Games.

He is expected to compete for a spot in the 2022 Winter Olympics, where he could be the oldest U.S. Olympic halfpipe rider in history.

MORE: White, Shiffrin among dominant Winter Olympians of 2010s

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