Ryan Lochte banned 10 months, to miss 2017 World Championships, reports say

Ryan Lochte
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Ryan Lochte has been banned 10 months, through next June, and excluded from next July’s world championships, after his gas-station incident and “over-exaggeration” in recounting the event at the Rio Olympics, according to TMZ and USA Today.

The three other swimmers involved — Olympic rookies Gunnar BentzJack Conger and Jimmy Feigen — received lesser bans of several months each, according to USA Today.

USA Swimming and the U.S. Olympic Committee have not confirmed the punishments. USA Swimming said Wednesday that no date has been set to announce any punishments. Lochte’s representatives did not immediately respond to messages.

Lochte’s ban would mean he won’t be able to compete at a world championships or an Olympics until 2019, the summer he turns 35 years old.

Lochte, a 12-time Olympic medalist, said after the incident but before the suspension announcement that he planned to continue swimming. He lost sponsors, including Speedo, but then added new ones. Lochte is currently busy training for Dancing with the Stars, with the season premiere Monday.

Lochte’s ban is four months longer than the suspension Michael Phelps received after his September 2014 DUI arrest, though Phelps also missed the 2015 World Championships.

Lochte missing the 2017 Worlds in Budapest, Hungary, dents any hope he had of breaking Phelps’ record of 33 world championships medals. Lochte owns 27 worlds medals, second all time, and had competed in the last six worlds in a row.

Given his 2016, Lochte is far from a lock to qualify for the first major international meet after his suspension ends — the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships in Tokyo.

Lochte struggled at this summer’s Olympic Trials and Olympics. While slowed with a groin injury, Lochte made the U.S. Olympic team in one individual event, the 200m individual medley, after making the team in four individual events each in 2008 and 2012.

In Rio, Lochte finished fifth in the 200m IM and earned gold with the 4x200m free relay.

MORE: Ryan Lochte, Laurie Hernandez join ‘Dancing with the Stars’

Jim Redmond, who helped son Derek finish 1992 Olympic race, dies

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Jim Redmond, who helped his injured son, Derek, finish his 1992 Olympic 400m semifinal, died at age 81 on Sunday, according to the British Olympic Association, citing family members.

At the 1992 Barcelona Games, Derek pulled his right hamstring 15 seconds into his 400m semifinal, falling to the track in anguish.

He brushed off help from officials, got up and began limping around the track. About 120 meters from the finish line, he felt the presence of an uncredentialed man who rushed down the stadium stairs, dodged officials and reportedly said, “We started this together, and we’re going to finish this together.”

“As I turned into the home straight, I could sense this person was about to try and stop me,” Derek said in an NBC Olympics profile interview before the 2012 London Games. “I was just about to get ready to sort of fend them off, and then I heard a familiar voice of my dad. He said, ‘Derek, it’s me. You don’t need to do this.'”

Derek said he shouted to his dad that he wanted to finish the race.

“He was sort of saying things like, ‘You’ve got nothing to prove. You’re a champion. You’ll come back. You’re one of the best guys in the world. You’re a true champion. You’ve got heart. You’re going to get over this. We’ll conquer the world together,'” Derek remembered. “I’m just sort of saying, ‘I can’t believe this is happening.'”

At one point, Derek noticed stadium security, not knowing who Jim was, having removed guns from their holsters.

“It’s the only time I’ve ever heard my dad use bad language,” Derek said. “He just goes, ‘Leave him alone, I’m his father.'”

Derek told himself in that moment, “I’m going to finish this race if it’s the last race I ever run.” It turned out to be the last 400m race of his career, after surgery and 18 months of rehab were not enough to yield a competitive comeback, according to Sports Illustrated.

Derek had missed the 1988 Seoul Games after tearing an Achilles, reportedly while warming up for his opening race. He looked strong in Barcelona, winning his first-round heat and quarterfinal.

“I’d rather be seen to be coming last in the semifinal than not finish in the semifinal,” he said, “because at least I can say I gave it my best.”

Asher Hong leads U.S. men’s gymnastics world team selection camp after first day

Asher Hong
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Asher Hong, 18, posted the highest all-around score on the first of two days of competition at the U.S. men’s gymnastics selection camp to determine the last three spots on the team for the world championships that start in three weeks.

Hong, bidding to become the youngest U.S. man to compete at worlds since Danell Leyva in 2009, totaled 84.6 points in Colorado Springs. He edged Colt Walker by one tenth. Tokyo Olympians Shane Wiskus (84.15) and Yul Moldauer (83.95) were next. Full apparatus-by-apparatus scores are here.

Brody Malone, who repeated as U.S. all-around champion at August’s national championships, and runner-up Donnell Whittenburg already clinched spots on the five-man team for worlds in Liverpool, Great Britain. They did not compete Monday, though their results from the first day of nationals are shown in the official scores.

The three remaining team spots will not necessarily go to the top three all-arounders at this week’s camp, which is supposed to be weighed equally with results from August’s nationals. Hong was third at nationals, but if excluding difficulty bonus points from that meet that will not be considered by the committee, would have finished behind Walker and Moldauer in August.

A selection committee is expected to announce the team soon after the second and final day of selection camp competition on Wednesday evening. The committee will look at overall scoring potential for the world team final, where three men go per apparatus, and medal potential in individual events.

Stephen Nedoroscik, who last year became the first American to win a world title on the pommel horse, is trying to make the team solely on that apparatus. He wasn’t at his best at nationals and struggled again on Monday, hurting his chances of displacing an all-arounder for one of the last three spots.

The U.S. has reason to emphasize the team event over individual medals at this year’s worlds. It will clinch an Olympic berth by finishing in the top three, and its medal hopes are boosted by the absence of the Russians who won the Olympic team title. All gymnasts from Belarus and Russia are banned indefinitely from international competition due to the war in Ukraine.

In recent years, the U.S. has been among the nations in the second tier behind China, Japan and Russia, including in Tokyo, where the Americans were fifth.

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