Rio swimming medalist Leah Smith misses Olympic team for Tokyo

Swimming - Olympics: Day 2
Getty Images

Swimmer Leah Smith was a favorite to return to the Olympic stage for much of the past five years, but the 26-year-old was unable to pull out the swims she needed this week in Omaha. Smith missed the 800m freestyle final in Friday’s heats, her final opportunity to make the team.

Smith won the 400m freestyle bronze at her debut in Rio, which was won by countrywoman Katie Ledecky, and then continued to lead the way domestically and internationally in distance freestyle races with Ledecky.

While Ledecky has already made the Tokyo team in three individual events and is on track to qualify in the 800m free as well, Smith came up short in all four of her events.

SWIM TRIALS: Results | TV Schedule | Women’s Event Previews | Men’s Event Previews

In the 400m IM, her first final of the week on Sunday, Smith placed fourth and missed the likely two Olympic spots up for grabs by a narrow 0.59 seconds.

Since Rio, Smith had taken silver at the 2017 Worlds and bronze at the 2019 Worlds in the 400m free. She was No. 2 to Ledecky in the U.S. every year from 2014-19 and entered Trials seeded as such. But in Monday’s final, Smith was third behind Ledecky and Paige Madden and missed the team by 1.41 seconds in a race lasting over 4 minutes.

Fastest in the 200m free preliminary round, Smith was then eighth fastest in both the semifinal and Wednesday’s final. Being top six would have given her a chance at being named to the 4x200m free relay team, with which she won Olympic gold in 2016 and the 2015 and 2017 World titles.

She was seeded eighth in the 1500m free but did not compete. The newest event to the Olympic program, the 1500m was held in the same sessions as the 200m at Trials.

Smith’s last chance at Tokyo began Friday in the 800m heats, where the top eight would advance to Saturday’s final. She claimed bronze at this distance in the 2017 Worlds and was fifth in 2019, and was again seeded second behind Ledecky, but finished 10th in the Trials heats, 4.37 seconds short of the final.

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U.S. men’s gymnastics team named for world championships

Asher Hong
Allison and John Cheng/USA Gymnastics

Asher Hong, Colt Walker and world pommel horse champion Stephen Nedoroscik were named to the last three spots on the U.S. men’s gymnastics team for the world championships that start in three weeks.

Brody Malone and Donnell Whittenburg earned the first spots on the team by placing first and second in the all-around at August’s U.S. Championships.

Hong, Walker and Nedoroscik were chosen by a committee after two days of selection camp competition in Colorado Springs this week. Malone and Whittenburg did not compete at the camp.

Hong, 18, will become the youngest U.S. man to compete at worlds since Danell Leyva in 2009. He nearly earned a spot on the team at the U.S. Championships, but erred on his 12th and final routine of that meet to drop from second to third in the all-around. At this week’s camp, Hong had the lowest all-around total of the four men competing on all six apparatuses, but selectors still chose him over Tokyo Olympians Yul Moldauer and Shane Wiskus.

Walker, a Stanford junior, will make his world championships debut. He would have placed second at nationals in August if a bonus system for attempting difficult skills wasn’t in place. With that bonus system not in place at the selection camp, he had the highest all-around total. The bonus system is not used at international meets such as world championships.

Nedoroscik rebounded from missing the Tokyo Olympic team to become the first American to win a world title on pommel horse last fall. Though he is the lone active U.S. male gymnast with a global gold medal, he was in danger of missing this five-man team because of struggles on the horse at the U.S. Championships. Nedoroscik, who does not compete on the other five apparatuses, put up his best horse routine of the season on the last day of the selection camp Wednesday.

Moldauer, who tweeted that he was sick all last week, was named the traveling alternate for worlds in Liverpool, Great Britain. It would be the first time that Moldauer, who was fourth in the all-around at last fall’s worlds, does not compete at worlds since 2015.

Though the U.S. has not made the team podium at an Olympics or worlds since 2014, it is boosted this year by the absence of Olympic champion Russia, whose athletes are banned indefinitely due to the war in Ukraine. In recent years, the U.S. has been among the nations in the second tier behind China, Japan and Russia, including in Tokyo, where the Americans were fifth.

The U.S. women’s world team of five will be announced after a selection camp in two weeks. Tokyo Olympians Jade Carey and Jordan Chiles are in contention.

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Paris 2024 Olympic marathon route unveiled

Paris 2024 Olympic Marathon
Paris 2024

The 2024 Olympic marathon route will take runners from Paris to Versailles and back.

The route announcement was made on the 233rd anniversary of one of the early, significant events of the French Revolution: the Women’s March on Versailles — “to pay tribute to the thousands of women who started their march at city hall to Versailles to take up their grievances to the king and ask for bread,” Paris 2024 President Tony Estanguet said.

Last December, organizers announced the marathons will start at Hôtel de Ville (city hall, opposite Notre-Dame off the Seine River) and end at Les Invalides, a complex of museums and monuments one mile southeast of the Eiffel Tower.

On Wednesday, the rest of the route was unveiled — traversing the banks of the Seine west to the Palace of Versailles and then back east, passing the Eiffel Tower before the finish.

The men’s and women’s marathons will be on the last two days of the Games at 8 a.m. local time (2 a.m. ET). It will be the first time that the women’s marathon is held on the last day of the Games after the men’s marathon traditionally occupied that slot.

A mass public marathon will also be held on the Olympic marathon route. The date has not been announced.

The full list of highlights among the marathon course:

• Hôtel de ville de Paris (start)
• Bourse de commerce
• Palais Brongniart
• Opéra Garnier
• Place Vendôme
• Jardin des Tuileries
• The Louvre
• Place de la Concorde
• The bridges of Paris
(Pont de l’Alma; Alexandre III;
Iéna; and more)
• Grand Palais
• Palais de Tokyo
• Jardins du Trocadéro
• Maison de la Radio
• Manufacture et Musées
nationaux de Sèvres
• Forêt domaniale
des Fausses-Reposes
• Monuments Pershing –
• Château de Versailles
• Forêt domaniale de Meudon
• Parc André Citroën
• Eiffel Tower
• Musée Rodin
• Esplanade des Invalides (finish)

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