Lindsey Vonn may cut back on ski races next season

Lindsey Vonn

Lindsey Vonn, who will try Saturday to break the World Cup women’s downhill wins record (37), may ski a lighter load of races next season.

Vonn said she could drop giant slaloms from her schedule and focus on the speed events of downhill and super-G, according to reports from Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, site of this weekend’s races.

Vonn’s primary goal this season is to win her fifth World Cup overall title, which has turned into a tight battle with Swiss Lara Gut. Gut is strong in downhill, super-G and giant slalom, which puts pressure on Vonn to also race giant slalom to keep up in the standings.

Gut leads by 50 points halfway through the season, a deficit that Vonn will likely erase if she sweeps Saturday’s downhill (NBC Sports Live Extra, 4:15 a.m. ET) and Sunday’s super-G (NBC Sports Live Extra, 5:30 a.m. ET) at a Dolomites resort where she’s won nine times.

Vonn last won a World Cup overall title in 2012, one season before her 2013 World Championships super-G crash and later two major knee surgeries that kept her from defending her Olympic downhill title in Sochi.

“This year there’s a good chance, but next year I don’t know if I can keep skiing GS [giant slalom],” Vonn said, according to The New York Times. “It takes a lot of energy, and it’s hard for my old knees to continue. If I got five [overall titles], I would be happy.”

Another number that Vonn must be aware of is 86, the World Cup wins record held by retired Swede Ingemar Stenmark.

Vonn had 59 wins when she returned from the knee surgeries in December 2014 and is now halfway to Stenmark in her comeback, at 73 victories.

She will pass Stenmark during the 2017-18 Olympic season if she continues her recent pace of wins per season, so long as she stays healthy.

Of the 14 wins in her comeback, only one has come in giant slalom — in Are, Sweden, on Dec. 12. She’s already said she’s finished racing slaloms.

“I could go home in between races if I didn’t do GS,” the 31-year-old Vonn said, according to The Associated Press. “It’s less training and less stress. I could sleep in more.”

MORE ALPINE: Mikaela Shiffrin’s comeback delayed

Paris 2024 Olympic marathon route unveiled

Paris 2024 Olympic Marathon
Paris 2024

The 2024 Olympic marathon route will take runners from Paris to Versailles and back.

The route announcement was made on the 233rd anniversary of one of the early, significant events of the French Revolution: the Women’s March on Versailles — “to pay tribute to the thousands of women who started their march at city hall to Versailles to take up their grievances to the king and ask for bread,” Paris 2024 President Tony Estanguet said.

Last December, organizers announced the marathons will start at Hôtel de Ville (city hall, opposite Notre-Dame off the Seine River) and end at Les Invalides, a complex of museums and monuments one mile southeast of the Eiffel Tower.

On Wednesday, the rest of the route was unveiled — traversing the banks of the Seine west to the Palace of Versailles and then back east, passing the Eiffel Tower before the finish.

The men’s and women’s marathons will be on the last two days of the Games at 8 a.m. local time (2 a.m. ET). It will be the first time that the women’s marathon is held on the last day of the Games after the men’s marathon traditionally occupied that slot.

A mass public marathon will also be held on the Olympic marathon route. The date has not been announced.

The full list of highlights among the marathon course:

• Hôtel de ville de Paris (start)
• Bourse de commerce
• Palais Brongniart
• Opéra Garnier
• Place Vendôme
• Jardin des Tuileries
• The Louvre
• Place de la Concorde
• The bridges of Paris
(Pont de l’Alma; Alexandre III;
Iéna; and more)
• Grand Palais
• Palais de Tokyo
• Jardins du Trocadéro
• Maison de la Radio
• Manufacture et Musées
nationaux de Sèvres
• Forêt domaniale
des Fausses-Reposes
• Monuments Pershing –
• Château de Versailles
• Forêt domaniale de Meudon
• Parc André Citroën
• Eiffel Tower
• Musée Rodin
• Esplanade des Invalides (finish)

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International Boxing Association lifts ban on Russia, Belarus

Boxing gloves

The International Boxing Association (IBA) lifted its ban on amateur boxers from Russia and Belarus over the war in Ukraine that had been in place since early March.

“The IBA strongly believes that politics shouldn’t have any influence on sports,” the federation said in a press release. “Hence, all athletes should be given equal conditions.”

Most international sports federations banned athletes from Russia and Belarus indefinitely seven months ago, acting after an IOC recommendation. It is believed that the IBA is the first international federation in an Olympic sport to lift its ban.

The IOC has not officially changed its recommendation from last winter to exclude Russia and Belarus athletes “to protect the integrity of the events and the safety of the other participants.”

Last week, IOC President Thomas Bach said in an interview with an Italian newspaper that Russian athletes who do not endorse their country’s war in Ukraine could at some point be accepted back into international sports, competing under a neutral flag.

IBA, in lifting its ban, will also allow Russia and Belarus flags and national anthems.

“The time has now come to allow all the rest of the athletes of Russia and Belarus to participate in all the official competitions of their sports representing their countries,” IBA President Umar Kremlev, a Russian, said in a press release last week. “Both the IOC and the International Federations must protect all athletes, and there should be no discrimination based on nationality. It is the duty of all of us to keep sports and athletes away from politics.”

In 2019, the IOC stripped the IBA — then known as AIBA — of its Olympic recognition following an inquiry committee report into finance, governance, refereeing and judging. The IOC ran the Tokyo Olympic boxing competition.

The IBA will not run qualifying events for the 2024 Paris Games, but it does still hold world championships, the next being a men’s event in Uzbekistan next year.

Boxing, introduced on the Olympic program in 1904, was not included on the initial program for the 2028 Los Angeles Games but can still be added. The IBA must address concerns “around its governance, its financial transparency and sustainability and the integrity of its refereeing and judging processes,” Bach said last December.

On Sept. 23, the IBA suspended Ukraine’s boxing federation, citing “government interference.” Ukraine boxers are still allowed to compete with their flag and anthem.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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