Three more biathletes qualify for U.S. Olympic team

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Tim BurkeSean Doherty and Clare Egan make it five biathletes qualified for the U.S. Olympic team.

The trio clinched berths with the conclusion of the fall World Cups in France this weekend. There is one more set of mass-start races Sunday, but no U.S. biathletes not already qualified are entered.

Burke and Doherty join world champion Lowell Bailey via top-30 finishes this season. Egan joins world silver medalist Susan Dunklee as the other top-finishing U.S. woman this season.

Burke is the biggest name of the trio. The 35-year-old former standard bearer of U.S. biathlon is going to his fourth Olympics.

Burke was once the hope to win the first U.S. Olympic medal in biathlon, the only Winter Olympic sport where the U.S. has yet to make a podium.

He led the World Cup overall standings in 2009 and won a 2013 World Championships silver medal but hasn’t been better than 18th individually at the Winter Games.

Bailey, also going to his fourth Olympics, succeeded Burke as the top U.S. man in recent seasons. Burke’s best World Cup finish since Sochi was sixth.

Doherty was the first U.S. teenage biathlete to compete at an Olympics in 2014 at age 18. He only competed in the relay in Sochi but has since grown to become the No. 2 American behind Bailey this season.

Doherty ranked No. 71 in last year’s World Cup standings. This season, he’s No. 27.

Egan will go to her first Olympics at age 31. She made her World Cup debut in 2015 and finished 20th and 22nd in two races at last season’s world championships.

The rest of the U.S. Olympic biathlon team — up to 10 biathletes total — will be determined in January.

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MORE: U.S. Olympic team roster

12-year-old skateboarders earn medals at world championships

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At the world skateboarding championships, 12-year-olds Chloe Covell from Australia and Onodera Ginwoo from Japan earned silver and bronze medals, respectively, in Sunday’s street finals.

In the women’s event, Covell took silver behind Brazilian 15-year-old Rayssa Leal, who was a silver medalist herself at the Tokyo Games.

Frenchman Aurélien Giraud, a 25-year-old who was sixth in skateboarding’s Olympic debut in Tokyo, won the men’s final in the United Arab Emirates. Ginwoo was third behind Portugal’s Gustavo Ribeiro.

The top Americans were Olympic men’s bronze medalist Jagger Eaton in sixth and 15-year-old Paige Heyn in seventh in the women’s event.

Nyjah Huston, a six-time world champion who placed seventh in Tokyo, missed worlds after August surgery for an ACL tear.

Up to three men and three women per nation can qualify per event (street and park) for the 2024 Paris Games. World rankings come June 2024 determine which Americans qualify.

In Tokyo, four of the 12 skateboarding medalists were ages 12 or 13.

Japan’s Kokona Hiraki, then 12, won silver in women’s park to become the youngest Olympic medalist since 1936, according to Olympedia.org. Japan’s Momiji Nishiya, then 13, won women’s street and became the youngest gold medalist in an individual event since 1936.

Worlds conclude this week with the men’s and women’s park events. The finals are Saturday.

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Francesco Friedrich, most decorated bobsledder in history, rebounds for 12th world title

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A week after his first major championships defeat in seven years, German Francesco Friedrich returned to his winning ways to close the world bobsled championships on Sunday.

Friedrich’s four-man sled won the world title by 69 hundredths of a second over British and Latvian sleds that tied for silver, combining times from four runs over the last two days in St. Moritz, Switzerland. It marked Great Britain’s first world championships men’s bobsled medal since 1966.

Geoff Gadbois drove the lone U.S. sled in the field, finishing 18th.

Friedrich, the most decorated bobsledder in history, extended his records with a fifth consecutive world four-man title and 12th world championship between two- and four-man events.

Germany swept all four titles at bobsled worlds with four different drivers taking gold.

Friedrich had won 12 consecutive Olympic or world titles before taking two-man silver at worlds last week in St. Moritz, Switzerland. He was dethroned in that event by countryman Johannes Lochner.

Friedrich has been hampered recently by a muscle injury from sprint training in late December. Going into worlds, Lochner had won four consecutive World Cup two-man races, while Hall won the last two World Cups in four-man.

Friedrich, 32, said before this season that he plans to make the 2026 Milan-Cortina Winter Games his final competition. Friedrich and push athlete Thorsten Margis can break the record of four career Olympic bobsled gold medals that they currently share with retired Germans Andre Lange and Kevin Kuske.

The World Cup season concludes with stops in Igls, Austria, and Sigulda, Latvia, the next two weekends.

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