Lashinda Demus
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Two Olympic silver medalists out of U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials

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Lashinda Demus and Brigetta Barrett, two 2012 Olympic silver medalists, will miss the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials in July and will not be able to return to the Games in August.

Demus, 33, took silver in the 400m hurdles in London, .07 behind Russian Natalya Antyukh.

Demus, also a four-time world championships medalist in the event, last competed June 28, 2015, finishing fourth at the U.S. Championships.

Since, she has been slowed by plantar fasciitis, vitamin deficiencies, a herniated disc in her lower back that required surgery, a broken right arm and meniscus and PCL tears in her knee, according to a blog post published Tuesday.

“I’ve struggled with injuries every single year since my silver medal, and you can see every bit of that in my performances,” Demus said in the post. “The athlete over these 4 years hasn’t come close to the athlete that I knew myself to be, and I think that’s what hurt my warrior soul the most.”

Demus said in the post she planned to come back next season.

The high jumper Barrett, on the other hand, has retired, according to her public relations and marketing agency.

She went from July 2014 to January 2016 without competing, according to Tilastopaja.org, reportedly undergoing hip surgery during that break.

She competed once this year but did not clear a height that would have automatically qualified her for the Olympic Trials. She was .01 off the needed height but still could have been invited to Trials.

Barrett took high jump silver at the 2012 London Games behind Russian Anna Chicherova, who recently failed a recent retest of a 2008 Beijing Olympic doping sample.

NBC Olympics track and field producer Seth Rubinroit contributed to this report.

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Federica Brignone passes Mikaela Shiffrin for World Cup overall lead

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Italian Federica Brignone passed an absent Mikaela Shiffrin for the World Cup overall standings lead by winning a combined in Switzerland on Sunday.

Brignone prevailed by .92 of a second adding times from super-G and slalom runs in Crans-Montana. Full results are here.

Brignone moved 73 points ahead of Shiffrin in the overall through 29 of 40 scheduled races. A race winner receives 100 points on a descending scale through the 30th-place finisher. The season runs through March 22.

Shiffrin, the three-time reigning World Cup overall champion, has not competed since the unexpected death of her father on Feb. 2. She has not announced if or when she will return this season.

Brignone, 29, is having a career season with five wins and 10 podiums across four disciplines.

Brignone’s best previous World Cup overall standings finish was fifth. She earned giant slalom medals at the 2018 Olympics (bronze) and 2011 World Championships (silver).

She could become Italy’s first female World Cup overall champion. The last Italian male winner was Alberto Tomba in 1995.

The women’s Alpine skiing World Cup moves to La Thuile, Italy, for a super-G and a combined next Saturday and Sunday.

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Jade Carey on brink of becoming first gymnast to qualify for U.S. Olympic team

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The U.S. Olympic gymnastics trials aren’t until late June, but Jade Carey is in position to qualify for the Tokyo Games in March.

Carey, seeking an individual Olympic gymnastics spot outside of the team competition, earned the maximum points in a World Cup series that is one path to Olympic qualification.

Carey has three wins each on floor exercise and vault with two World Cups left in March. Carey will mathematically clinch an Olympic spot if no other gymnasts earn maximum points on one of the apparatuses to force a tiebreaker.

A gymnast’s top three finishes across the eight-stop series count in Olympic qualifying. If Carey finishes atop the floor or vault standings, she goes to the Olympics.

Carey picked up those third wins on floor and vault at the sixth World Cup in Melbourne, Australia, this weekend.

So far, no other gymnast has two wins on floor. One other gymnast can get to the maximum points on vault with one win between the last two stops (and others with two).

The one downside to qualifying this route: Carey would not be able to compete in the team competition at the Olympics. Those four spots will be determined at and after June’s trials in St. Louis, with Simone Biles likely grabbing one of them.

“I knew I would be giving up being on the team,” Carey said in October of going the World Cup route, “but I think, for me, it made sense to just go for it.”

Carey is a world medalist on vault and floor, but she doesn’t have the all-around credentials of Biles and some other U.S. gymnasts.

Olympic team event roster sizes were cut from five to four for Tokyo, putting a greater onus on all-around prowess given a team must put three gymnasts on each apparatus in the Olympic final.

The U.S. is the deepest country in women’s gymnastics, so the only truly safe pick to make the four-woman Olympic team event roster is Biles.

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