Rachel Homan runner-up at Canada curling championship while 8 months pregnant

Rachel Homan
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Rachel Homan, while eight months pregnant, skipped a curling team that took runner-up at the Canadian National Championship on Sunday.

Homan, Canada’s skip at the 2018 Olympics, led a four-woman team in their first full tournament together to the top ranking and a playoffs bye into Sunday night’s final in Calgary.

In that final, Kerri Einarson‘s team edged Homan’s group 9-7 for a repeat title. Homan finished as, statistically, the second-ranked skip behind Einarson at the event known as Scotties.

“Can we talk for a second about skipper over here?” Emma Miskew, a teammate since each were 11 years old, said after the final. “Unbelievable that you curled that well. Think all women should be inspired to do that. It’s just amazing.”

Homan is due with her second child in April.

“My energy levels are really good, just a few body aches that obviously come with being this far along and trying to have balance on the ice, sliding up and down and even walking,” she said last week on CBC’s “That Curling Show.” “But, when I’m curling, it feels really good and not too many changes there. So I’ve been fortunate.”

Homan earned a third consecutive runner-up at nationals. She also competed while pregnant in 2019 before having son Ryatt that June, recalling throwing up between ends.

“It’s a little bit different when there’s like a solid mass that has nowhere to go, so it’s tougher to breathe,” she told TSN last month. “You have no core for sweeping. Eating can be challenging because, as you get further along, there isn’t really room to put maybe the nutrients that you need for a three-hour game. So trying to find when you can eat and all the wonderful side effects of pregnancy that make those challenging as well. I won’t bore you with the details.”

The world championship tournament was canceled for a second consecutive year due to the coronavirus pandemic. It could be rescheduled, possibly in Calgary.

“I hope one day, if I’m eight months pregnant, I can play half as good as Rachel right now,” teammate Sarah Wilkes said in the late stages of nationals.

Homan made her Olympic debut in 2018 and skipped Canada to a sixth-place finish. In 2017, Homan’s group ended a Canadian record nine-year drought between world titles by becoming the first team to go undefeated through a women’s worlds.

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2022 Ironman Kona World Championships results

Ironman Kona World Championships
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2022 Ironman Kona World Championship top-10 results and notables (full, searchable pro and age group results are here) …

Pro Women
1. Chelsea Sodaro (USA) — 8:33:46
2. Lucy Charles-Barclay (GBR) — 8:41:37
3. Anne Haug (GER) — 8:42:22
4. Laura Philipp (GER) — 8:50:31
5. Lisa Norden (SWE) — 8:54:43
6. Fenella Langridge (GBR) — 8:56:26
7. Sarah Crowley (AUS) — 9:01:58
8. Daniela Ryf (SUI) — 9:02:26
9. Skye Moench (USA) — 9:04:31
10. Laura Siddall (GBR) — 9:07:49
16. Heather Jackson (USA) — 9:22:17
DNF. Sarah True (USA)

Pro Men
Race is on Saturday, live on Peacock at 12 p.m. ET.

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Chelsea Sodaro wins Ironman Kona World Championship, ends American drought

Chelsea Sodaro
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Chelsea Sodaro was the surprise winner of the Ironman Kona World Championships women’s race, ending the longest American victory drought in the event’s 44-year history.

Sodaro, a 33-year-old mom to an 18-month-old, prevailed in an unofficial 8 hours, 33 minutes, 46 seconds on Hawaii’s Big Island.

“My mind is a little bit blown right now,” she said in a finish area interview 25 minutes later, standing next to her daughter, Skylar. “This is the culmination of things being right in my life and having perspective. … This is freakin’ incredible, but the greatest gift at the end of the finish line is my little 18-month-old.”

Sodaro was in fifth place after the 2.6-mile swim and 112-mile bike, then recorded one of the fastest 26.2-mile marathon runs in event history (2:51:45) to win by 7 minutes, 50 seconds over Brit Lucy Charles-Barclay.

Swiss Daniela Ryf, who was eyeing her sixth Ironman world title, led after the bike but faded quickly on the run.

MORE: Ironman Kona Race Results

Sodaro, whose lone previous full Ironman was a second-place finish at June’s European Championships (reportedly in the second-fastest Ironman distance debut in history), became the first American to win in Kona since Tim DeBoom in 2002 and the first American to win the women’s race since Zimbabwean-turned-American Paula Newby-Fraser in 1996.

She is the first woman or man to win in their Kona debut since Brit Chrissie Wellington took the first of her four titles in 2007.

Sodaro (née Reilly) was an All-America runner at Cal, then placed 19th in the 10,000m at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials.

She turned to triathlon in 2017, made podiums on the World Cup circuit (just below the top-level World Series for Olympic hopefuls) and moved up to long-distance racing in 2018.

At the half Ironman distance, she was fourth at the 2019 World Championships, her last major championship start before the pandemic, pregnancy, childbirth and a move up to the full Ironman this year.

“I’m pretty stoked that I think I maybe get to take the rest of the year off and be a mom for a month or so,” Sodaro said.

The pro men’s race is Saturday, live on Peacock at 12 p.m. ET.

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