Breanna Clark breaks own world record to defend 400m Paralympic title

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Breanna Clark won the women’s 400m T20 gold medal and continued to lower her own records at the Tokyo Paralympics.

The Los Angeles native has now won the race at every major championship she competed.

Clark had claimed the Rio 2016 title in a Paralympic record time of 57.79 seconds. She broke that record Tuesday morning, winning her heat by a whopping 3.36 seconds in 56.07.

In the final, the 26-year-old dropped the Paralympic record once again, this timing breaking the 55.99 world record she had set in 2018. She won by exactly one second, in 55.18, over 2021 European champ Yuliia Shuliar of Ukraine. Brazil’s Jardenia Felix Barbosa da Silva was third in 57.43 seconds.

The T20 classification is for athletes with intellectual impairments; Clark was diagnosed with autism at 4 years old.

Since her big debut in Rio, Clark has won the 2017 and 2019 World titles, plus 2019 Parapan American gold.

Americans won six medals in track and field on Tuesday, though a fifth-place finish was just as notable.

Tatyana McFadden, a 19-time Paralympic medalist, was fifth – just 0.61 seconds off the podium – in the women’s 1500m T54.

McFadden was the two-time reigning Paralympic champion at that distance. She also won the world title in 2011, 2013 and 2017.

“Tough race tonight in the down pouring rain,” she posted to social media. “I gave it all I had out there tonight, and couldn’t ask for anything better. Proud of myself and looking forward to the next race.”

The five-time Paralympian already has a silver and bronze from Tokyo but is still seeking her first gold of the Games with two individual races remaining.

Sam Grewe won his first Paralympic gold, taking the high jump T63 title at 1.88 meters after settling for silver in the event in Rio. He is the three-time reigning world champion.

Brittni Mason earned silver in a photo finish in the first Paralympic final of her career, barely edged by Lisbeli Marina Vera Andrade of Venezuela in the women’s 100m T47.

Both women finished at 11.97 seconds. Reigning Paralympic gold medalist Deja Young, Mason’s teammate, took bronze at 12.21.

Mason set the current world record of 11.89 seconds when she beat Young for the 2019 World title.

Young is the 2016 Paralympic and 2019 World champion in the 200m, which both Americans will race Saturday.

Kym Crosby was third in the women’s 100m T13, same as in Rio.

In the morning finals, Roderick Townsend claimed his second medal of the Games with a personal best long jump of 7.43 meters in the T47 classification. Cuba’s Robiel Yankiel Sol Cervantes won the event with a Paralympic record of 7.46 meters. Townsend had won high jump gold on Sunday.

A full Paralympic Games broadcast schedule is available here. Events can also be streamed on NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports app, with more info available here.

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

Asher Hong
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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
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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 –
Lafayette
• Château de Versailles
• Forêt domaniale de Meudon
• Parc André Citroën
• Eiffel Tower
• Musée Rodin
• Esplanade des Invalides (finish)

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