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U.S. roster for world track and field championships

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Veterans Allyson Felix and Justin Gatlin and rising stars Christian ColemaenNoah Lyles and Michael Norman headline the U.S. roster for the world track and field championships that start next week.

While most athletes clinched spots at the USATF Outdoor Championships in July, the roster could not be completed until after the Diamond League season concluded two weeks ago. Diamond League Finals champions, in some cases, picked up extra roster spots for the U.S.

The U.S. has the fastest man in the 100m, 200m and 400m this year in Coleman, Lyles and Norman, plus the Diamond League 800m champion in Donavan Brazier.

Felix, coming back from November childbirth, will compete at a ninth worlds, breaking the U.S. record she shared with high jumper Amy Acuff. Felix was sixth in the 400m at nationals, putting her on the team for relays only.

Blake Leeper, the Paralympian who placed fifth in the men’s 400m, is not on the team. Leeper’s prosthetics have not been cleared by the IAAF for competition against able-bodied runners.

The full roster:

Men
100m
Christian Coleman
Mike Rodgers
Chris Belcher
Justin Gatlin
Cravon Gillespie (relay only)

200m
Noah Lyles
Christian Coleman
Rodney Rowe
Kenny Bednarek

400m
Fred Kerley
Michael Norman
Nathan Strother
Vernon Norwood
Michael Cherry (relay only)
Tyrell Richard (relay only)
Wil London (relay only)
Obichukwu Igbokwe (relay only)

800m
Donavan Brazier
Clayton Murphy
Bryce Hoppel
Brandon Kidder

1500m
Craig Engels
Matthew Centrowitz
Ben Blankenship

5000m
Paul Chelimo
Hassan Mead
Ben True

10,000m
Lopez Lomong
Shadrack Kipchirchir
Leonard Korir

110m Hurdles
Daniel Roberts
Grant Holloway
Devon Allen

400m Hurdles
Rai Benjamin
TJ Holmes
Amere Lattin

3000m Steeplechase
Hillary Bor
Stanley Kebenei
Andy Bayer

High Jump
Jeron Robinson
Shelby McEwen
Keenon Laine

Pole Vault
Sam Kendricks
Cole Walsh
KC Lightfoot
Zach Bradford

Long Jump
Trumaine Jefferson
Jeff Henderson
Steffin McCarter

Triple Jump
Donald Scott
Will Claye
Omar Craddock
Christian Taylor

Shot Put
Ryan Crouser
Joe Kovacs
Darrell Hill

Discus
Sam Mattis
Brian Williams
Mason Finley

Hammer
Conor McCullough
Rudy Winkler
Daniel Haugh

Javelin
Michael Shuey
Riley Dolezal

Decathlon
Devon Williams
Solomon Simmons
Harrison Williams

Women
100m
Teahna Daniels
English Gardner
Morolake Akinosun
Tori Bowie
Kiara Parker (relay only)
Caitland Smith (relay only)

200m
Dezerea Bryant
Brittany Brown
Angie Annelus

400m
Shakima Wimbley
Kendall Ellis
Wadeline Jonathas
Phyllis Francis
Courtney Okolo (relay only)
Jessica Beard (relay only)
Allyson Felix (relay only)
Jasmine Blocker (relay only)

800m
Ajee Wilson
Hanna Green
Raevyn Rogers
Ce’Aira Brown

1500m
Shelby Houlihan
Jenny Simpson
Nikki Hiltz

5000m
Karissa Schweizer
Elinor Purrier
Rachel Schneider

10,000m
Molly Huddle
Emily Sisson
Marielle Hall

100m Hurdles
Keni Harrison
Nia Ali
Brianna McNeal

400m Hurdles
Dalilah Muhammad
Sydney McLaughlin
Ashley Spencer
Kori Carter

3000m Steeplechase
Emma Coburn
Courtney Frerichs
Colleen Quigley
Allie Ostrander

High Jump
Vashti Cunningham
Inika McPherson
Tynita Butts

Pole Vault
Sandi Morris
Katie Nageotte
Jenn Suhr

Long Jump
Brittney Reese
Jasmine Todd
Shakeela Saunders
Tori Bowie

Triple Jump
Keturah Orji
Tori Franklin

Shot Put
Chase Ealey
Michelle Carter
Maggie Ewen

Discus
Valarie Allman
Kelsey Card
Laulauga Tausaga

Hammer
DeAnna Price
Gwen Berry
Brooke Andersen

Javelin
Ariana Ince
Kara Winger

20km Racewalk
Maria Michta Coffey

50km Racewalk
Katie Burnett

MORE: Jamaican runner whose heart stopped mid-race retires

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Bradie Tennell’s personality shines through at Skate America

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LAS VEGAS — At Skate America on Friday night, fans got a glimpse of the “real” Bradie Tennell — strong, smart, funny; a little salty, but a little sweet.

Performing a short program set to a fast-paced medley of Kirrill Richter’s staccato piano compositions, Tennell practically gave off sparks while unleashing a solid triple Lutz, triple toe loop combination, liquid spins and her best steps ever.

The Las Vegas crowd gave her a standing ovation and so did the judges, who awarded the 2019 U.S. national silver medalist a personal best 75.10 points.

For the first time ever, Tennell leads a Grand Prix event, taking a 1.85-point advantage into Saturday’s free skate.

“I went out with the mindset to do it like I do every day in practice, no better but certainly no worse,” she said.

The 21-year-old skater, who grabbed attention with a surprising bronze medal at 2017 Skate America and went on to win the 2018 U.S. title, hasn’t always revealed as much of herself in interviews as some of her peers. She’s mostly been content with doing her job on the ice, and last season placed a solid seventh at the world championships.

“I think (this program) just allows me to show the side of myself that I am off the ice with my family, a little bit more sarcastic, a little bit funny,” Tennell said. “It’s almost like an onion when you peel back the layers. To show this program is a challenge for me but it’s a challenge I welcome.”

Longtime coach Denise Myers, who trains Tennell in the Chicago area, likes the new lens the program creates.

“Brady is a fun-loving personality that maybe now the world is getting to see a little better,” Myers said. “No surprise to me.”

The electricity Tennell ignited on Friday proves that when a skater loves her material, magic can happen. This isn’t the program Tennell and choreographer Benoit Richaud intended to use. An earlier routine, choreographed in May, failed to inspire the skater. When she saw Richaud at a training camp in Courchevel, France in June, she asked him to try again.

“So then he puts up this music and I’m like, ‘What is this, this is so cool, this is my music, let’s start now,’” Tennell recalled. “I was so excited to find this piece of music and use it…. Yeah, I love this program.”

Skate America is Tennell’s first competition of the season; a fractured bone in her right foot forced her to withdraw from a Challenger Series’ event in Canada last month. The injury kept her off of the ice for much of the summer, and when she attended U.S. Figure Skating’s Champ Camp in late August, she was wearing a protective boot.

“Before my injury, I can’t remember the last time I didn’t have pain on the ice with my feet,” Tennell said. “It felt really bad at the beginning of July, and then it started to get progressively worse really quickly. So I went to the doctor and got some scans done, and they said, ‘Yeah, you’ve got a break in the bone there.’”

About a month ago, Tennell returned to full training, resolving to make up for lost time.

“That’s just her determination,” Myers said. “You have to listen to what your body is saying. She’s just very determined to have a successful season.”

MORE: How to watch Skate America

Tennell’s free skate, also choreographed by Richaud, is set to music from the romantic 1988 film Cinema Paradiso.

“It’s a totally different feel, that’s what’s so exciting about this year,” Myers said. “The short is a little sassier, a little more mature, and the other program is so soft and feminine.”

It will take every ounce of Tennell’s mettle to stay on the Skate America podium. Japanese skaters Kaori Sakamoto and Wakaba Higuchi, both powerhouse jumpers, are close behind in second and third place. Russian teen Anna Shcherbakova sits fourth with 67.60 points and can make up the deficit if she lands the quadruple Lutz she showed at a Challenger event in Italy last month. In practices in Las Vegas, Shcherbakova has included two quad lutzes in her run-throughs. More on the results of the ladies’ short program from Friday evening in Las Vegas here.

MORE: Nathan Chen hopes to hip hop his way to Skate America crown

As a reminder, you can watch the events from the 2019-20 figure skating season live and on-demand with the ‘Figure Skating Pass’ on NBC Sports Gold. Check out a free trial of the Figure Skating Pass during Skate America from Oct. 18-20. Go to NBCsports.com/gold/figure-skating to sign up for access to every ISU Grand Prix and championship event, as well as domestic U.S. Figure Skating events throughout the season. NBC Sports Gold gives subscribers an unprecedented level of access on more platforms and devices than ever before.

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Bradie Tennell leads Skate America field after Russians falter

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Bradie Tennell‘s bronze medal at 2017 Skate America propelled her to a national title and a place on the PyeongChang Olympic team in 2018.

At Skate America on Friday evening in Las Vegas, Tennell outpaced the ladies’ field by 1.85 points, scoring 75.10 points — her best-ever short program score. Tennell opened her program with a triple Lutz, triple toe combination, followed by a double Axel and a triple flip. What could a win at her first Grand Prix event of the season set up for the 2019-20 year? Time will tell.

“I went out there with the mindset of doing what I do everyday in practice and not trying to make anything any better or certainly any worse,” Tennell said through U.S. Figure Skating. “I wanted to enjoy myself, be relaxed and perform. The ice is my safe space. It’s where I feel most at home… It’s almost like an onion. You have to peel back the layers, and that’s almost what I’m doing with my skating now. To show this program is a challenge for me but one that I welcome.”

MORE: Tennell’s personality shines through at Skate America

Her closest competitor, Kaori Sakamoto from Japan, tallied 73.25 points after skating to Alice Merton’s “No Roots.” Sakamoto has won the silver medal at Skate America for the past two seasons.

Japan’s Wakaba Higuchi skated to another pop song, Sia’s “Bird Set Free,” and scored 71.76 points. She’s in third place heading into Saturday’s free skate.

Skate America results are here.

The standings are a surprising twist, as many pinned Russian skaters Anna Shcherbakova and Yelizaveta Tuktamysheva to be inside the top three after the short program.

In her senior Grand Prix debut, Shcherbakova slipped and fell in her step sequence and accrued a mandatory one-point deduction. She still tallied 67.60 points, good enough for fourth place on Friday evening.

Expect to see quadruple jumps from Shcherbakova in Saturday’s free skate. She trains under Moscow-based coach Eteri Tutberidze alongside a host of burgeoning Russian skaters, including reigning world and Olympic champion Alina Zagitova.

Meanwhile, Tuktamysheva, the 2015 world champion, sits in fifth place behind Shcherbakova by a slim 0.32 points. While her triple Axel was awarded positive Grades of Execution, her triple Lutz was called under-rotated.

2017 national champion Karen Chen returned to major international competition after being away for more than a year due to injury. The Cornell freshman finished her short program in sixth place with 66.03 points.

“There were definitely nerves,” Chen said of her return to competition. “This year is my comeback year, and so I wanted to make it count, but at the same time I know that I’m throwing a lot of things out there, like I’m skating and I’m also going to school. It’s been tough balancing, but I do really enjoy it and I think it’s the right decision.”

The third American in the field, Amber Glenn, is seventh with 64.71 points.

MORE: How to watch Skate America

In ice dance Friday night, Madison Hubbell and Zach Donohue have high hopes of keeping the U.S.’ winning streak alive at Skate America. After Saturday’s free dance, the Montreal-trained team could extend U.S. ice dancers’ win streak to 11. They won this event last year, too.

Hubbell and Donohue skated to a Marilyn Monroe medley — including “My Heart Belongs to Daddy,” which Hubbell admitted to wanting to skate to since the 2014 season — to score 84.97 points.*

“I feel like we have so much progress to make on the program, but it was a really great performance for today,” Hubbell said through U.S. Figure Skating. “It was really exciting for me to debut the Marilyn Monroe character. It’s something I have dreamed about skating to for many years, so it was great to actualize that here in Las Vegas.”

Aleksandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin of Russia sit close behind with 81.91 points, after a rhythm dance set to “Sparkling Diamonds” and “Your Song” from Moulin Rouge. The Russian duo were fourth behind Hubbell and Donohue at the 2019 World Championships, and Stepanova recently returned from a back injury. Canada’s Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Sorensen performed their rhythm dance to selections from “Bonnie & Clyde” and placed third with 79.17 points.

Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko landed in sixth place after the rhythm dance with 70.41 points. The third American dance team in the field, Caroline Green and Michael Parsons, were eighth with 67.97 points after the rhythm dance in their Grand Prix debut. They’re a brand new team this season; Green formerly danced with her brother and Parsons was previously partnered with his sister.

“I feel that so far we have adapted really well to the new partnership,” Green said. “I think that we have a good trust with each other. Maybe it is not quite as natural as it was with our siblings, but I definitely think we are in a good place and this has the potential to be even a little higher.”

“I had a long career with my sister and it does feel strange to be at a competition like this without her, but I think I’m really lucky in the fact that I can use all the experiences I had with her to learn from, to teach Caroline and to build on this new partnership,” Parsons added.

*Editor’s Note: Due to a calculation error on the element “Pattern Dance Type Step Sequence” (PSt), the Rhythm Dance (RD) scores at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating event Skate America had to be re-calculated for all skaters. The revised results and details are published with the corrected scores. The overall RD standing did not change. They are correct in this article as of 10 a.m. Saturday. 

Friday afternoon, Nathan Chen was the only men’s skater to break the 100-point barrier. More on the men’s and pairs’ short program here.

MORE: Hubbell, Donohue already thinking about worlds in Montreal

As a reminder, you can watch the events from the 2019-20 figure skating season live and on-demand with the ‘Figure Skating Pass’ on NBC Sports Gold. Check out a free trial of the Figure Skating Pass during Skate America from Oct. 18-20. Go to NBCsports.com/gold/figure-skating to sign up for access to every ISU Grand Prix and championship event, as well as domestic U.S. Figure Skating events throughout the season. NBC Sports Gold gives subscribers an unprecedented level of access on more platforms and devices than ever before.

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