Olympics Live: Iran skier 1st confirmed doping case of Games
BEIJING (AP) — The Latest on the Beijing Winter Olympics:
Iran’s only male athlete at the Beijing Olympics has tested positive for an anabolic steroid in the first confirmed doping case at the Games.
The International Testing Agency says Alpine skier Hossein Saveh Shemshaki failed a drug test on Monday in Beijing, before competing.
He is provisionally suspended and cannot compete at what was to be his third Olympics.
The 36-year-old raced in slalom and giant slalom at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and four years later at Sochi. He carried Iran’s flag at the opening ceremony in Sochi.
He can appeal against his provisional ban at the Court of Arbitration for Sport in Beijing.
Germany is making the Olympic luge competition its own national showcase once again.
Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt won the doubles title at the Beijing Olympics on Wednesday night, their third consecutive gold medal in the event.
They finished two runs in 1 minute, 56.653 seconds, holding off fellow Germans Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken by 0.099 seconds.
Austria’s Thomas Steu and Lorenz Koller survived a wobble just before the finish line to get the bronze.
Zack DiGregorio and Sean Hollander were 11th for the U.S. in their Olympic debut.
Germany is now 3-for-3 in luge gold medals at these Games and will try to sweep the events when the team relay is contested Thursday night.
South Korea’s Hwang Daeheon has won the 1,500 meters in Olympic short track speedskating.
Hwang stuck his skate in front at the tight finish of the 10-man final Wednesday night at the Capital Indoor Stadium.
Steven Dubois of Canada took silver. Semen Elistratov of the Russian Olympic Committee earned bronze.
There were so many skaters in the final that six lined up on the start and the other four were in back. The pack circling the rink looked more like a relay than an individual final.
Liu Shaoang of Hungary finished fourth. His brother, Liu Shaolin Sandor, was sixth.
South Korea has advanced to the final of the women’s 3,000-meter relay in short track speedskating.
Kim A Lang could become the first skater to win three consecutive Olympic titles in the same event. She and Seo Whimin, Choi Minjeong and Lee Yubin will compete in the A final on Sunday.
South Korea has won gold six of the eight times the relay has been held at the Olympics, including the last two. Kim, Choi and Lee return from four years ago when they won in their home country.
Also moving on to the A final were Canada, China and the Netherlands.
The U.S. team of Kristen Santos, Corinne Stoddard, Maame Biney and Julie Letai will skate in the B final.
The Liu brothers of Hungary are among the top qualifiers for the men’s 1,500-meter final in short track speedskating.
Liu Shaolin Sandor and Liu Shaoang advanced out of the semifinals at the Capitol Indoor Arena.
Also joining them in the A final are South Korean teammates Hwang Daeheon, Lee Juneseo and Park Janghyuk.
China’s Ren Ziwei was penalized for an arm block and 37-year-old Charles Hamelin of Canada was penalized for a lane change in their semifinal. That allowed three skaters to be advanced to the A final, including Yuri Confortola of Italy, who had crashed out.
Failing to advance was Sjinkie Knegt of the Netherlands, who was penalized for an arm block.
Defending Olympic champion Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands was the top qualifier in heats of the 1,000 meters at short track speedskating.
Arianna Fontana of Italy, who is the most decorated short track skater in Olympic history, moved on to the quarterfinals Wednesday.
Also advancing were Choi Minjeong of South Korea and Americans Kristen Santos, Maame Biney and Corinne Stoddard.
Santos won her heat. Biney benefitted when Canadian Kim Boutin tripped and crashed while leading their heat. Boutin won a silver medal four years ago in Pyeongchang.
Stoddard skated with a white bandage on her broken nose. She got hurt in a crash on the first day of competition.
Three-time Olympian Kim A Lang of South Korea was eliminated.
Germany’s Vinzenz Geiger has won a men’s Nordic combined gold, rallying from a 1-minute, 26-second deficit to cross the finish line first in a 10K cross-country race after ranking 11th in ski jumping earlier in the day.
Joergen Graabak of Norway earned silver Wednesday night and Lukas Greiderer of Austria took bronze.
Japan’s Ryota Yamamoto jumped 108 meters (354 feet) and had 133 points in the first part of event, giving him a 38-second lead over the pack, but he faded from contention halfway through the cross-country race.
In the sport that forces athletes to have ski jumping and cross-country skiing skills, the athlete who jumps the farthest and impresses judges the most gets to start the cross-country portion with a lead. The rest of the field follows, in order of their finish in ski jumping. The first to cross the finish line wins gold.
It’s the only Olympic sport where only men compete.
China’s Ren Ziwei, Sjinkie Knegt of the Netherlands and Charles Hamelin of Canada are among the top qualifiers through to the semifinals of the men’s 1,500 meters at short track speedskating.
Liu Shaolin Sandor and his brother Liu Shaoang of Hungary also moved on in the first of three rounds that will culminate with the final later Wednesday.
John-Henry Krueger of Hungary, South Korean teammates Hwang Daeheon, Park Janghyuk and Lee Juneseo, and Pascal Dion of Canada also advanced.
South Korea has won gold three of five times since the 1,500 debuted at the 2002 Olympics.
Americans Andrew Heo and Ryan Pivirotto were eliminated.
The Russian ice hockey team has started its defense of the Olympic men’s gold medal with a 1-0 win over Switzerland in Beijing.
It wasn’t the convincing start to the tournament the Russians may have hoped for as they were outshot 33-30 by a Swiss team not expected to contend for a medal.
The Russians, playing as the Russian Olympic Committee, had a slice of good fortune for the only goal.
A shot from former Edmonton Oilers forward Anton Slepyshev took a double bounce off Swiss goaltender Reto Berra’s pad and Enzo Corvi’s leg on its way into the goal with 2.7 seconds left of the first period.
Fabrice Herzog could have sent the game to overtime when he hit the frame of the goal late in the third period. Russian goaltender Ivan Fedotov had 33 saves for the shutout on his Olympic debut.
The winners in the team figure skating competition at the Beijing Olympics still have not received their medals two days later because of what the IOC says are “legal issues.”
The ceremony to award gold to Russia, silver to the United States silver and bronze to Japan was not held as scheduled Tuesday.
Reporters asked the Kremlin about it amid speculation that gold medals won by six Russian skaters could be at risk.
“Let’s, for the sake of understanding, wait for some explanations either from our sports officials or from the IOC,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
The IOC has not provided more information about the legal issues.
If any athlete and team were disqualified or had their results nullified, an appeal would likely follow, which could further delay the medals presentation.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport has set up an office in Beijing to hear urgent cases during the Winter Games.
Canada placed fourth Monday and would be in line to be upgraded to the podium if another team were disqualified.
Finland men’s hockey forward Marko Anttila has returned to the team after being released from an isolation hotel at the Beijing Olympics. Coach Jukka Jalonen expects goaltender Jussi Olkinuora to be out later today.
Anttila had been in isolation for six days because he tested positive for COVID-19. Olkinuora was taken to isolation Monday.
“Of course it was disappointing for me, but otherwise it was just boring,” Anttila said after practice. “Of course it’s frustrating, and I feel good physically and all those things. But I think it’s history, hopefully, now and I can get my (virus numbers at) the right level.”
Anttila says he first tested positive for the coronavirus a little over three weeks ago. The 36-year-old had no symptoms after testing positive upon arrival in Beijing or during any of his time in isolation.
Getting back into hockey shape is the bigger concern with Finland’s first game scheduled for tomorrow against Slovakia.
“Of course the feeling is not that good on the ice right now, but physically I’m OK,” Anttila said. “I get workouts there and all those things, so it’s not a problem.”
Japan’s Ryota Yamamoto jumped 108 meters (354 feet) and had 133 points in the first part of the Nordic combined event at the Beijing Olympics.
That gives him a 38-second lead in the 10K cross-country race that will take place later Wednesday.
Lukas Greiderer of Germany will start second, followed closely by Germans Julian Schmid and Johannes Rydzek. Top-ranked Johannes Lampater of Austria will be 1 minute, 4 seconds behind Yamamoto, as will Japan’s Sora Yachi.
The athlete who jumps the farthest and impresses judges the most gets to start the cross-country portion of the Nordic combined with a lead. The rest of the field follows, in order of the finish in ski jumping. The first to cross the finish line wins gold.
Four of the top seven Nordic combined athletes, including second-ranked Jarl Magnus Riiber of Norway, recently tested positive for COVID-19 and did not compete on the normal hill. They can potentially make a comeback on the large hill Tuesday and in the team competition next week.
Nordic combined has been part of the Winter Olympics since the first one in 1924. It’s the only Olympic sport without gender equity, as only men compete.
Lindsey Jacobellis captured America’s first gold medal of the Olympics on Wednesday, riding hard to the line in her snowboardcross final a full 16 years after a mistake cost her the title.
The 36-year-old racer was in her fifth Olympics and captured the first U.S. win of what has been an otherwise dismal Games for the U.S.
The victory came after America’s top racer, skier Mikaela Shiffrin, skidded out and failed to finish the first run of the slalom, making her 0-for-2 in Beijing.
Up until Wednesday, Jacobellis was best known for taking a massive lead into the final jump at the 2006 Turin Games, but tweaking her board as she road over the crest, then falling and settling for silver.
This time, she rode hard all the way to the line, beating France’s Chloe Trespeuch, then covering her heart with her hands as she slowed. Canada’s Meryeta Odine won the bronze.
Petra Vlhova added an Olympic gold medal to her growing list of achievements, winning the women’s slalom at the Beijing Games.
It was Slovakia’s first Olympic medal in Alpine skiing. Mikaela Shiffrin again failed to finish the race.
Vlhova, who has already clinched the World Cup title in the discipline, was only eighth fastest after the first run down the Ice River course. But she made it up for an unofficial combined time of 1 minute, 44.98 seconds.
Katharina Liensberger of Austria was 0.08 seconds slower than Vlhova over the two legs for second. Wendy Holdener of Switzerland was third, 0.12 behind Vlhova.
After falling on his first attempt, snowboarder Shaun White hammered down a pressure-packed halfpipe qualifying run to make it through to the medal round of his fifth and final Olympics.
The three-time gold medalist fell on his signature trick on his first run -- the Double McTwist 1260 -- and was mired in 19th place.
After a 50-minute wait following his fall, White returned to the top of the pipe and nailed the same run he’d tried before.
Each rider got two tries and only their best score counted. The top 12 advanced to Friday’s final. White ended up in fourth.
He stomped every landing and yell out a “Yeahhhh” at the bottom. He qualified behind two-time silver medalist Ayumu Hirano, 2018 bronze medalist Scotty James and Hirano’s Japanese teammate, Ruka Hirano.
The medal ceremony for the team figure skating competition at the Beijing Olympics has been delayed because of an ongoing legal issue that could affect medalists, the IOC said.
The ceremony to award the Russian team the gold medals, the United States silver and Japan bronze was not held as scheduled Tuesday.
International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams said the reason was a “legal consultation” required with the governing body of skating. Details of the case were not specified.
In a one-line statement, the International Skating Union also cited ongoing legal talks.
If any athlete and team were disqualified, an appeal would likely follow to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Canada placed fourth and would be in line to be upgraded.
Norway’s Birk Ruud won gold in the Olympics’ first men’s freestyle skiing big air event, re-emerging as a leader in the extreme sport after losing his father to cancer and injuring his knee.
A day after Eileen Gu’s gold medal temporarily broke Chinese social media site Weibo, the men put on another impressive show at Big Air Shougang — a shuttered steel mill that now hosts the world’s only permanent big air jump.
Ruud has two Winter X Games big air gold medals and four world cup wins, but only one since 2019. The 21-year-old’s father, Øivind, died of cancer last April, and Ruud has said the loss pulled his mind away from competitive skiing.
Ruud’s final score of 187.75 was well clear of American silver medalist Colby Stevenson’s 183. Swedish veteran Henrik Harlaut took bronze at 181.
She scored 87.75, good enough for the top spot in women’s qualifying Wednesday at Genting Snow Park.
The 21-year-old from California turned it up a notch in run No. 2, but fell on her switch backside 720. She raised her hand as if to say, “Oh well.” She playfully stuck out her tongue while waiting for her score.
Mitsuki Ono of Japan was second in qualifying. This a day after appearing to be bothered by a hip ailment in training and in some discomfort. Cai Xuetong of China had the third-best score in qualifying, with Queralt Castellet of Spain also in the mix.
The biggest surprise was the performance of American Maddie Mastro, who finished just outside of the top-12 that advanced to Thursday’s final. She was in the last spot but was bumped out by one of the final riders, Elizabeth Hosking of Canada.
Lena Dürr is leading the women’s slalom at the Beijing Games after two-time Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin saw another race end early.
Shiffrin skidded out of control about five seconds into the opening run of Wednesday’s slalom. The 26-year-old American also fell early in the first run of Monday’s giant slalom.
Dürr led from the start as she was first down the course know as the Ice River. The German skier posted a time of 52.17 seconds, 0.03 quicker than Michelle Gisin of Switzerland.
Giant slalom gold medalist Sara Hector of Sweden is 0.12 behind Dürr.
Dürr’s highest individual finish at a major championship is 11th at the worlds in 2019. She has never won a World Cup slalom race.
The 30-year-old is likely to head into the second run in the lead with only lower-ranked skiers remaining.
Two-time Olympic champion Mikaela Shiffrin has missed a gate early in the first run of the slalom at the Beijing Games and is out of the event.
Just like in her first event of these Olympics, the giant slalom, the American racer was done for the day within a matter of seconds.
After Wednesday’s mistake in the slalom, which she won at the 2014 Sochi Games, Shiffrin sat on the side of the hill and bowed her head.
The 26-year-old Shiffrin is trying to become the first Alpine ski racer from the United States to win three Olympic golds across a career.
She has said she hoped to enter all five individual events at Yanqing Alpine Skiing Center.
Defending Olympic downhill champion Sofia Goggia is on the Beijing slopes and training after crashing and injuring her left knee and leg last month.
The Italian arrived late to China after she sprained her left knee, partially tore a cruciate ligament and had a “minor fracture” of the fibula bone in her leg. She also had some tendon damage after the crash in a World Cup super-G in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, on Jan. 23.
Goggia has won the last eight World Cup downhills that she completed.
Goggia arrived in China on Monday and was checked out by the Italian team’s medical staff. She then did three runs of giant slalom and three runs of super-G training on Tuesday and was doing more of the same on Wednesday.
The team says she has not decided yet if she will race the super-G on Friday but she is planning on taking part in the first of three downhill training sessions on Saturday. The downhill race is scheduled for Tuesday.
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