Ryan Lochte returns to USA Swimming competition after suspension ends

AP
1 Comment

Ryan Lochte will compete for the first time since the end of his 10-month suspension and for the first time as a father this week.

The 12-time Olympic medalist is entered in the Los Angeles Invitational with races Friday and Saturday at his new training location, the University of Southern California.

Lochte, whose son, Caiden, was born June 8, is entered in the 50m and 100m freestyles and the 200m individual medley.

Lochte was suspended through June 30 by USA Swimming for his Rio gas-station incident. He competed once during the ban at a non-USA Swimming sanctioned April masters meet, where he won multiple races.

Lochte is ineligible for the world championships that start July 23 in Budapest, meaning he will miss worlds for the first time since 2003.

Lochte plans to compete through the 2020 Olympic season, eyeing his fifth Games.

Lochte will turn 36 years old during the Tokyo Olympics, making him older than all but two previous U.S. Olympic swimmers in individual events (Edgar Adams, 1904, and Dara Torres, 2008).

While Michael Phelps has retired, fellow dads Anthony Ervin (two-time Olympic 50m free champ) and Matt Grevers (2012 Olympic 100m back champ) are still competing.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: Phelps details Shark Week race

Kendall Gretsch wins six gold medals at Para Nordic Ski Worlds

Kendall Gretsch
Getty
0 Comments

Kendall Gretsch, who won Paralympic titles at the last Summer and Winter Games, added another six gold medals at the World Para Nordic Skiing Championships in Sweden last week.

Gretsch, 30, earned seven total medals in seven days between biathlon and cross-country skiing.

Gretsch won gold medals in three different sports across the last three Paralympics: biathlon and cross-country skiing in 2018 (two years after taking up the sports), triathlon in 2021 and biathlon in 2022.

She plans to shift her focus back to triathlon after this winter for 2024 Paris Games qualification.

Gretsch, born with spina bifida, was the 2014 USA Triathlon Female Para Triathlete of the Year. Though triathlon was added to the Paralympics for the 2016 Rio Games, her classification was not added until Tokyo.

Also at last week’s worlds, six-time Paralympian Aaron Pike earned his first Paralympic or world championships gold medal in his decade-plus career, winning a 12.5km biathlon event.

Oksana Masters, who won seven medals in seven events at last year’s Paralympics to break the career U.S. Winter Paralympics medals record, missed worlds due to hand surgery.

The U.S. also picked up five medals at last week’s World Para Alpine Skiing Championships in Spain — three silvers for five-time Paralympian Laurie Stephens and two bronzes for 17-year-old Saylor O’Brien.

Stephens now has 18 career medals from world championships, plus seven at the Paralympics.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

World champion skier Kyle Smaine dies in avalanche at age 31

Kyle Smaine
Getty
0 Comments

Kyle Smaine, a retired world champion halfpipe skier, died in an avalanche in Japan on Sunday, according to NBC News, citing Smaine’s father. He was 31.

Smaine, a 2015 World champion in ski halfpipe, had been doing ski filming in Japan, sharing videos on his Instagram account over the past week.

The native of South Lake Tahoe, California, finished ninth in ski halfpipe at the 2016 Winter X Games in Aspen, Colorado.

In 2018, Smaine won the fifth and final U.S. Olympic qualifying series event in ski halfpipe but did not make the four-man team for PyeongChang. His last sanctioned international competition was in February 2018.

Late Sunday, two-time Olympic champion David Wise won the X Games men’s ski halfpipe and dedicated it to Smaine.

“We all did this for Kyle tonight,” Wise said on the broadcast. “It’s a little bit of an emotional day for us. We lost a friend.”