Katie Zaferes
ITU Media

Katie Zaferes leads U.S. sweep of World Triathlon Series podium

Leave a comment

U.S. women’s triathlon is back to the same position as four years ago — dominating.

Rio Olympian Katie Zaferes led a podium sweep at a World Triathlon Series event in Yokohama, Japan, on Saturday. She was followed by two would-be first-time Olympians, Summer Rappaport and Taylor Spivey. Full results are here.

It’s the fourth U.S. women’s sweep in WTS history and the first since 2016. Zaferes was part of the U.S.’ rise to the top in the last Games cycle, when Gwen Jorgensen became the first American triathlete to win the Olympics and was twice joined on 2015 WTS podiums by Zaferes and Sarah True.

Jorgensen has converted to the marathon. True is now an Ironman-distance triathlete.

Zaferes kept steadily improving, moving from fifth to fourth to third to second in the WTS rankings the last four seasons. The 18th-place finisher in Rio has won all three events this season, pulling away from Rappaport in the last kilometer of Saturday’s 10km run to prevail by 21 seconds.

Rappaport (née Cook) led the last U.S. sweep two weeks after the Rio Games. Yokohama marked her return to the podium. Spivey reached her second podium in three 2019 races.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: Tokyo 2020 Olympic triathlon to start early to beat the heat

Boglarka Kapas, world champion swimmer, tests positive for coronavirus

Boglarka Kapas
Getty Images
Leave a comment

Boglarka Kapas, the Hungarian swimmer and world 200m butterfly champion, said she tested positive for the coronavirus.

“I don’t have any symptoms yet, and that’s why it’s important for you to know that even if you feel healthy you can spread the virus,” was posted on her social media. “Please be careful, stay at home and stay healthy.”

Nine total members of the Hungarian national team — including swimmers and staff — have tested positive, according to the federation.

Kapas said her first test was negative but a second test showed she had the virus. She was staying in quarantine at home for two weeks.

Kapas, 26, won the 200m fly at last summer’s world championships by passing Americans Hali Flickinger and Katie Drabot in the last 25 meters. She clocked 2:06.78 to prevail by .17 of a second.

Kapas also took bronze in the Rio Olympic 800m freestyle won by Katie Ledecky.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

NHL players: Marie-Philip Poulin is world’s best female hockey player

Getty Images
Leave a comment

The U.S. may have the world’s best women’s hockey team, but NHL players believe Canadian Marie-Philip Poulin is the world’s best player.

Poulin received the most votes out of 496 responses in the 2019-20 NHLPA Player Poll, conducted before the season was suspended. The tally:

Poulin: 39.92%
Hilary Knight (USA): 36.29%
Kendall Coyne Schofield (USA): 15.52%
Emily Pfalzer Matheson (USA): 1.41%
Other: 6.85%

Last year, Knight received the highest percentage of votes from 203 NHL players (27.59), edging Poulin (24.14) with Amanda Kessel third (12.81) and Coyne Schofield and Pfalzer Matheson each receiving 5.91 percent.

Why were Poulin and Knight swapped this year? Perhaps Poulin’s Canadian team winning the debut of the NHL All-Star Skills Competition women’s 3-on-3 game on Jan. 24, even though Knight scored and Poulin did not.

Poulin, now 29, scored both goals in the 2010 Olympic final and the game-tying and -winning goals in the 2014 Olympic final. Even before her Olympic debut at age 18, the daughter of Quebec hospital workers was dubbed “the female Sidney Crosby.”

Knight, 30, led last April’s world championship tournament with seven goals as the U.S. won a fifth straight title. Poulin played 4 minutes, 44 seconds, total at the tournament, missing time with a knee injury.

This spring’s tournament, which was to start Tuesday, was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: Winter Olympic sports season produced pain, stories to track for 2022