Anthony Ervin misses world team as Caeleb Dressel keeps rising

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Anthony Ervin defied Father Time in Rio. He couldn’t do it again in Indianapolis on Saturday.

Ervin, who last year became the oldest individual Olympic swimming champion by four years, finished sixth in the 50m freestyle at USA Swimming Nationals. Ervin will not be going to the world championships later this month.

USA Swimming Nationals, part of the TeamUSA Summer Champions Series, presented by Comcast, determines the team for worlds in Budapest.

Ervin, who at 36 was the oldest swimmer at nationals by three years, needed a top-two finish to earn a trip to Hungary.

Caeleb Dressel won the 50m free in 21.53 seconds, qualifying for his fourth individual event at worlds. He was followed by Nathan Adrian in 21.87. Ervin clocked 22.09.

Dressel, 20, has nine events to choose from at worlds when including five relays (two mixed-gender). He swam in one individual event (sixth in the 100m free) and two relays in Rio (prelim only in the medley relay).

SWIM NATIONALS: Full Results

In other events Saturday, Leah Smith joined Katie Ledecky on the world team in the women’s 1500m freestyle by swimming 16:01.02.

It’s the second-fastest time in the world this year, 25 seconds behind the leader Ledecky. Ledecky had a bye onto the world team in the 1500m by winning the 800m free on Tuesday.

Smith, the Olympic 400m free bronze medalist, qualified for the world team in the 200m, 400m, 800m and 1500m frees, plus the 400m individual medley and the 4x200m free relay.

If Smith swims all of those events at worlds, it lines up to be 7,000 total meters of racing if she makes every final (700 more meters than Ledecky’s slate).

“Last summer, I swam three events [in Rio],” Smith said on Universal HD. “So, this will be really fun to challenge myself.”

Simone Manuel won the women’s 50m freestyle in 24.27 seconds. Abbey Weitzeil held off Lia Neal by .03 to sneak onto the world team.

Olympians Chase Kalisz and Melanie Margalis won the 200m IMs.

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U.S. Olympic, USA Gymnastics leaders set for another Senate hearing

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Recently replaced U.S. Olympic Committee acting CEO Susanne Lyons, USA Gymnastics President and CEO Kerry Perry and Michigan State interim president John Engler are scheduled witnesses for a Senate subcommittee hearing next Tuesday on reforms following the Larry Nassar sexual-abuse crimes.

The hearing is titled, “Strengthening and Empowering U.S. Amateur Athletes: Moving Forward with Solutions” and will stream live at https://www.commerce.senate.gov/ on Tuesday at 2:30 p.m. ET.

“The hearing will focus on changes made by the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Gymnastics (USAG), and Michigan State University (MSU) to protect Olympic and amateur athletes from abuse,” according to the subcommittee’s website. “It will examine recent reforms to provide safe environments for athletes and how these reforms are being implemented.”

The subcommittee held hearings April 18 and June 5 with testimonies from gymnasts and other athletes who were abused, former Michigan State president Lou Anna Simon and former senior vice president of USA Gymnastics Rhonda Faehn. Former USA Gymnastics CEO Steve Penny also attended the June 5 hearing but refused to answer questions.

Lyons and Perry were questioned at a House subcommittee hearing May 23.

The USOC last Thursday named Sarah Hirshland its new CEO, replacing Lyons, who had been in the role on an interim basis since Scott Blackmun resigned in February. Blackmun, who had been CEO since January 2010, left citing prostate cancer and the USOC’s need to immediately address the USA Gymnastics sexual-abuse scandal.

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Annemiek van Vleuten wins La Course with epic comeback (video)

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Annemiek van Vleuten, the cyclist who returned from a horrific Rio Olympic road race crash to become world champion, repeated as La Course winner with an epic last-kilometer comeback on Tuesday.

Van Vleuten sprinted from several seconds behind countrywoman Anna van der Breggen to win the one-day race, including four categorized climbs, contested on part of the Tour de France stage 10 course later that day.

“With 300 meters to go, I still thought I got second, and then I saw her dying,” Van Vleuten said, adding later, according to Cyclingnews.com, “With 500 meters to go my team director in the car gave up and stopped cheering for me.”

In Rio, van Vleuten suffered three small spine fractures and a concussion when her brakes appeared to lock, and she flipped over into a ditch during the road race. Van Vleuten was alone in the lead at the time with about seven miles to go of the 87-mile course.

She was eventually hospitalized in intensive care.

Van der Breggen went on to win the Olympic title, while van Vleuten returned quick enough to race at the October 2016 World Championships.

Van Vleuten, 35, won her first world title 13 months after the Rio Games, taking the time trial crown ahead of van der Breggen by 12 seconds. She also won the 10-stage Giro Rosa that concluded on Sunday.

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