Tadej Pogacar outduels Jonas Vingegaard, wins Tour de France’s first mountain stage

0 Comments

Tadej Pogacar outdueled primary challenger Jonas Vingegaard in the Tour de France’s first mountain stage, extending his overall standings lead as he seeks a third consecutive title in cycling’s most prestigious event.

Pogacar, a 23-year-old Slovenian, led the group of general classification contenders as they chased down lone leader German Lennard Kamna toward the top of the Planche des Belles Filles in stage seven of 21.

Vingegaard then made his move past Pogacar, as they both passed a gassed Kamna, only to see Pogacar counter to overtake him in the final dozen pedal strokes to take a second consecutive stage victory. Pogacar took a look back at Vingegaard as he reached the finish line, a move reminiscent of “The Look” from Lance Armstrong to Jan Ullrich in 2001.

“When Jonas attacked, he was strong, but I said, yeah, my boys [teammates] were working all day, I had to push to the finish line,” said Pogacar, who wore special shoes Friday to commemorate opening a cancer research foundation. “[Vingegaard] is probably the best climber in the world.”

Pogacar and Vingegaard were given the same finishing time, but Pogacar gained a 10-second bonus for the stage win (Vingegaard got a six-second bonus) to extend his overall standings lead to 35 seconds over Vingegaard.

TOUR DE FRANCE: Standings | Broadcast Schedule | Stage by Stage

Pogacar reinforced his status as the man to beat at this year’s Tour given Vingegaard is his biggest threat. Vingegaard, a 25-year-old Dane, was a distant second at last year’s Tour.

This year, Vingegaard began the Tour as a co-leader of Team Jumbo-Visma with 2020 Tour runner-up Primoz Roglic of Slovenia, but Roglic lost two minutes on the cobblestones of stage five, denting his hopes and elevating Vingegaard as the rival to Pogacar.

Pogacar bids to join Chris Froome as the lone three-peat Tour de France champions over the last 27 years (not including the stripped Armstong).

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde wins Beaver Creek downhill

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde
Getty
0 Comments

BEAVER CREEK, Colorado — Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde won his second straight World Cup downhill race to start the season, despite feeling under the weather.

Although dealing with an illness all week in training, Kilde powered through the challenging Birds of Prey course Saturday in a time of 1 minute, 42.09 seconds. It was enough to hold off Marco Odermatt of Switzerland by 0.06 seconds. James Crawford of Canada was third to earn his second career World Cup podium finish.

Kilde also won the opening downhill last weekend in Lake Louise, Alberta.

ALPINE SKIING: Results | Broadcast Schedule

The Beaver Creek crew members had the course in solid shape a day after a downhill race was canceled due to high wind and snowfall.

Kilde reached speeds around 75 mph (121 kph) in picking up his eighth World Cup downhill victory. That tied him with Kjetil Jansrud for the third-most downhill wins in the World Cup discipline among Norwegian men. The total trails only Aksel Lund Svindal (14) and Lasse Kjus (10).

Odermatt has been on the podium in all four World Cup races this season as he tries to defend his overall World Cup title. The 25-year-old finished third in the opening downhill of the season last weekend. He’s also won a giant slalom race and a super-G.

Ryan Cochran-Siegle wound up in seventh place for the top American finish. Switzerland’s Beat Feuz, who won the Olympic downhill gold medal at the Beijing Games last February, tied for ninth.

The Beaver Creek stop on the circuit comes to a close Sunday with a super-G race. Odermatt will be the favorite after holding off Kilde in the opening super-G last weekend.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Summer McIntosh, Canadian teen swimmer, caps record year with another historic time

0 Comments

Summer McIntosh swam the fourth-fastest 400m individual medley in history on Friday, capping a year that already included world titles, Commonwealth Games titles and a victory over Katie Ledecky.

McIntosh, a 16-year-old Canadian whose mom swam at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, won the 400m IM in 4 minutes, 28.61 seconds at the U.S. Open in Greensboro, N.C. She prevailed by a Ledecky-like 13.24 seconds, breaking her own national record that was previously the fourth-fastest time in history.

“It’s still pretty early in the season, so I didn’t really know what to expect going into it,” she said on Peacock.

The only two women who ever went faster in the event known as the decathlon of swimming are Olympic gold medalists: Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu (world record 4:26.36 and 4:28.58) and China’s Ye Shiwen (4:28.43).

McIntosh has come a long way in a short time. Three years ago, she put all her eggs in the 1500m freestyle basket, thinking it was her best shot to merely qualify for the Tokyo Games in 2020. The one-year Olympic postponement was a blessing.

The rapidly improving McIntosh swam three individual events in Tokyo with a top finish of fourth in the 400m free, just missing becoming the youngest swimming medalist since 1996. She then told her coach she wanted to become an IMer.

At this past June’s world championships, McIntosh won two of the most grueling events — 400m IM and 200m butterfly — to become the youngest individual world champion since 2011. She also took silver to Ledecky in the 400m free, an event in which she later beat Ledecky in a short-course meet (25-meter pool rather than the 50-meter pool used for the Olympics).

A month after worlds, McIntosh swept the IMs at the Commonwealth Games, where she broke more world junior records and again took second in the 400m free (this time to Olympic champ and world record holder Ariarne Titmus of Australia).

McIntosh, who turned professional last year, now trains full-time in Sarasota, Florida, where she rents a house with her mom, Jill Horstead, who was ninth in the 200m fly at the 1984 Olympics (McIntosh, whose passions include the Kardashians and plants from Target, has seen video of her mom winning the B final at those Games). They’re a three-hour drive down Interstate 75 from Ledecky’s base in Gainesville.

Also Friday, Erin Gemmell celebrated her 18th birthday by nearly becoming the first American to beat Ledecky in a 200m freestyle in nearly nine years. Ledecky won by 42 hundredths of a second in 1:56.74 and said she had an off-day while also praising Gemmell, the daughter of her former coach.

NBC airs U.S. Open highlights on Dec. 10 at 4:30 p.m. ET.

U.S. OPEN SWIMMING: Full Results

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!