Ryan Lochte’s first individual Olympic gold medal goes missing

Ryan Lochte
Getty Images
0 Comments

Ryan Lochte said his “No. 1” gold medal from his first individual Olympic title in 2008 has gone missing.

“I don’t know where it is,” Lochte told Graham Bensinger in an interview clip published Wednesday. “I have a couple guesses.”

Lochte believed a former agent or his mom had the medal, but said they told him they don’t have it.

The gold medal carries added emotional weight for Lochte. It came in the 200m backstroke at the 2008 Beijing Games, where Lochte broke his own world record.

Before that, Lochte earned relay golds, plus individual silver and bronze medals behind Michael Phelps in his previous individual Olympic events. About a half-hour after the 200m backstroke in Beijing, Lochte took another bronze in a race won by Phelps.

But the 200m back in Beijing was all about Lochte, defeating the defending Olympic champion Aaron Peirsol, who beat Lochte at the Olympic Trials and tied Lochte’s world record in Omaha.

In the Water Cube crowd, Lochte’s father and first swim coach, Steven, cried. He previously told his son that he was a good swimmer, but greatness came when you break a world record and win a gold medal in the Olympics.

“When he did the parade around the pool, he got up on the bleachers, and I leaned over the railing,” Steven said in “In Deep with Ryan Lochte,” an NBC Sports film on Peacock. “I whispered, ‘You’re great.'”

Lochte remembered it.

“I could just see the tears of joy coming from him and how proud he was of me,” he said.

Lochte, 36, is bidding to qualify for his fifth Olympics next year and to become the second-oldest U.S. Olympic swimmer in history after Dara Torres.

He is coming back from suspensions for his Rio gas-station incident and then for receiving an IV infusion of an illegal amount of a legal substance. Lochte was caught because he published a photo of the infusion on social media.

His best chance to qualify for the Olympics appears to be in the 200m individual medley, where Lochte is a four-time world champion and the world-record holder. He ranks fifth among Americans in the event since the start of 2019. The top two at trials in June qualify for Tokyo.

MORE: ‘In Deep with Ryan Lochte’: Watch clips from Peacock film

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Diana Taurasi returns to U.S. national basketball team

Diana Taurasi
Getty
0 Comments

Diana Taurasi is set to return to the U.S. national basketball team next week for the first time since the Tokyo Olympics, signaling a possible bid for a record-breaking sixth Olympic appearance in 2024 at age 42.

Taurasi is on the 15-player roster for next week’s training camp in Minnesota announced Tuesday.

Brittney Griner is not on the list but is expected to return to competitive basketball later this year with her WNBA team, the Phoenix Mercury (also Taurasi’s longtime team, though she is currently a free agent), after being detained in Russia for 10 months in 2022.

Taurasi said as far back as the 2016 Rio Games that her Olympic career was likely over, but returned to the national team after Dawn Staley succeeded Geno Auriemma as head coach in 2017.

In Tokyo, Taurasi and longtime backcourt partner Sue Bird became the first basketball players to win five Olympic gold medals. Bird has since retired.

After beating Japan in the final, Taurasi said “see you in Paris,” smiling, as she left an NBC interview. That’s now looking less like a joke and more like a prediction.

Minnesota Lynx coach Cheryl Reeve succeeded Staley as head coach last year. In early fall, she guided the U.S. to arguably the best FIBA World Cup performance ever, despite not having stalwarts Bird, Griner, Tina Charles and Sylvia Fowles.

Taurasi was not in contention for the team after suffering a WNBA season-ending quad injury in the summer. Taurasi, who is 38-0 in Olympic games and started every game at the last four Olympics, wasn’t on a U.S. team for an Olympics or worlds for the first time since 2002.

Next year, Taurasi can become the oldest Olympic basketball player in history and the first to play in six Games, according to Olympedia.org. Spain’s Rudy Fernandez could also play in a sixth Olympics in 2024.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Mo Farah likely to retire this year

Mo Farah
Getty
0 Comments

British track legend Mo Farah will likely retire by the end of this year.

“I’m not going to go to the Olympics, and I think 2023 will probably be my last year,” the 39-year-old Farah said, according to multiple British media reports.

Farah, who swept the 5000m and 10,000m golds at the Olympics in 2012 and 2016, was announced Tuesday as part of the field for the London Marathon on April 23.

Last May, Farah reportedly said he believed his career on the track was over, but not the roads.

London might not be his last marathon. Farah also said that if, toward the end of this year, he was capable of being picked to run for Britain again, he would “never turn that down,” according to Tuesday’s reports.

It’s not clear if Farah was referencing the world track and field championships, which include a marathon and are in Budapest in August. Or selection for the 2024 British Olympic marathon team.

The fastest British male marathoner last year ran 2:10:46, ranking outside the top 300 in the world. Farah broke 2:10 in all five marathons that he’s finished, but he hasn’t run one since October 2019 (aside from pacing the 2020 London Marathon).

Farah withdrew four days before the last London Marathon on Oct. 2, citing a right hip injury.

Farah switched from the track to the marathon after the 2017 World Championships and won the 2018 Chicago Marathon in a then-European record time of 2:05:11. Belgium’s Bashir Abdi now holds the record at 2:03:36.

Farah’s best London Marathon finish in four starts was third place in 2018.

Farah returned to the track in a failed bid to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics, then shifted back to the roads.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!