HIGHLIGHTS: Big wins for Germany in Bobsled, Luge and Cycling; world record for Chloe Dygert Owen; U.S. shooting & table tennis picks Olympians

New U.S. 25 m Pistol Olympian Lexi Lagan

Headline results of noteworthy competitions around the world:

It’s been a busy weekend in international sport; click here for our coverage of track & field, including U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials wins for Galen Rupp and Aliphine Tuliamuk, a fast Tokyo Marathon that was limited only to the elite runners, and hot running in the Boston University Last Chance meet, with n American Indoor Record in the 3,000 m for Karissa Schweizer.

ALPINE SKIING ● The FIS Alpine World Cup started the final month of its season, but without much skiing due to heavy weather for both men and women.

In Hinterstoler (AUT), Austrian veteran Vincent Kreichmayr won the Super-G on Saturday and France’s Alexis Pinturault won one of his favorite events – the Alpine Combined – on Sunday. Swiss Mauro Caviezel was second in both and has three silvers in the last four races. The scheduled Giant Slalom has been postponed to Monday. With nine races left out of 43 on the season, Norway’s Alexander Aamodt Kilde still leads with 1,082 points, followed by Pinturault (1,048) and Henrik Kristoffersen (NOR: 981). Full results here.

The women had it even tougher. Austria’s Nina Ortlieb won Saturday’s Super-G, ahead of World Cup leader Federica Brignone (ITA) at La Tuhile (ITA), but Sunday’s Combined was snowed out and next week’s Giant Slalom and Slalom in Ofterschwang (GER) were canceled with bad weather ahead. Full results here.

With 30 of 37 races completed, Brignone leads American Mikaela Shiffrin by 1,378-1,225, with no indication of a return by Shiffren this season, after the death of her father in January. Slovakian star Petra Vlhova is now third at 1,189.

BOBSLED & SKELETON ● The World Championships in Altenberg concluded on Sunday with a German sweep of the second week. Double Olympic champ Francesco Friedrich (GER) drove his four-man sled to a third straight world title; he now owns 11 Worlds wins plus two silvers for a career total of 13. He has now won both the 2-man and 4-man titles in three straight Worlds. Germany swept the event, with Johannes Lochner second and Nico Walther third.

German entries swept the Skeleton events, with Christopher Grotheer, Axel Jungk and Alexander Gassner taking the men’s medals and Tina Hermann winning her third world title (and second in a row). Swiss Marina Gilardoni was surprise silver medalist, ahead of Austria’s Janine Flock. Jacqueline Loelling and Gassner teamed to win the Mixed Team event. Full results here.

CURLING ● Tabitha Peterson and Joe Polo won the USA Curling Mixed Doubles National Championship in Bemidji, Minnesota on Sunday with a 7-4 win over defending champions Cory Christiansen and John Shuster in the final.

A three-point fourth end was decisive and the winners will represent the U.S. at the World Mixed Doubles Championship in Canada in April. More details here.

CYCLING ● The seven-stage UAE Tour on the UCI World Tour was cut short by two days when two confirmed cases of the coronavirus were reported for two Italian staff members of one of the participating teams. All of the riders and staff were quarantined in their hotels until tested and released. The standings after five days showed Britain’s Adam Yates as the winner, 1:01 ahead of Tadej Pogacar (SLO) and Alexey Lutsenko (KAZ: +1:33). Full results here.

The European “Classics” season opened on Saturday with the 75th Omloop Het Nieuwsblad Elite race from Ghent to Ninove (200 km) in Belgium, with a 1-2 for the home crowd. Jasper Stuyven outleaned Yves Lampaert at the finish, with Dane Soren Kragh Andersen third (+0:06). It’s the first win for Stuyven in this race; he had been no better than fourth in four prior tries. Full results here.

The Track Cycling World Championships in Berlin (GER) were closely watched as a preview of the action in Tokyo this summer, with the home team and the Dutch having the most to cheer about. Sprinter Harrie Lavreysen (NED) won the Sprint, the Keirin and joined Jeffrey Hoogland and Roy van den Berg in the Team Sprint for three golds during the event. Denmark’s Lasse Norman Hansen won the men’s Madison with Michael Morkov and garnered a second gold as a member of the winning Team Pursuit squad. Ashton Lambie of the U.S. won the only American men’s medal with a silver in the Individual Pursuit, won by Italy’s Filippo Ganna.

The women’s races had another triple winner in the Sprints, with German Emma Hinze thrilling the home crowd with golds in the Sprint and Keirin and as a member of the Team Sprint with Pauline Grabosch. American Chloe Dygert Owen won the Individual Pursuit (in world-record time: 3:17.283) and joined Jennifer Valente, Emma White and Lily Williams for another American gold in the Team Pursuit. Valente won silver medals in the Scratch Race and Points Race and finished fifth in the Omnium after an exhausting schedule. Her three medals give her a career Worlds total of nine. Dygert Owen has now won the Worlds Pursuit three times and the Team Pursuit four times and the U.S. is a clear medal favorite for Tokyo in that event.

Dutch star Kirsten Wild won both the Scratch Race and the women’s Madison, riding with Amy Pieters. The Dutch won the most total medals with nine (and led with six golds), with Germany winning eight medals (4-1-3), followed by Italy (6) and the U.S. and France (5). Full results here.

DIVING ● The opening leg of the 2020 FINA Diving World Series was held in Montreal (CAN) over the weekend, with the perennially-favored Chinese staying home because of the coronavirus outbreak there.

That opened the door for host Canada, which collected six golds and eight medals overall in the 10 events. Philippe Gagne scored an upset over Britain’s two-time Worlds bronze medalist, Jack Laugher, in the 3 m Springboard, and Jennifer Abel won the women’s 3 m, with Meaghan Benfeito taking the 10 m Platform title. Abel and Melissa Citrini Beaulieu won the Synchro 3 m and Benfeito and Caeli McKay took the Synchro 10 m. Finally, Abel won a third event with Francois Imbeau-Dulac in the Mixed 3 m.

Russian divers won three events and had the most total medals with nine. Platform star Viktor Minibaev took silver in the men’s 10 m, then teamed with Aleksandr Bondar to win the men’s Synchro 10 m, and with Ekaterina Beliaeva in the Mixed 10 m Synchro. Nikita Shleikher and Evgenii Kuznetsov won the men’s 3 m Synchro.

The lone American medal was won by Mike Hixon, third in the men’s 3 m Springboard. Full results here.

FREESTYLE SKIING ● A light schedule this week had only a Dual Moguls events in Shymbuylak (KAZ), with Japan’s Ikuma Horishima winning his first Dual Moguls gold of the season, just ahead of Canadian superstar Mikael Kingsbury. The women’s event saw U.S. star Jaelin Kauf win for the first time this season; she’s the only woman with medals in all three events so far (1-1-1); France’s seasonal leader, Perrine Laffont, was third.

In the Aerials competition, American Chris Lillis won a medal for the second straight event, taking the victory over Swiss Pirmin Werner. Ukraine’s Nadiya Mokhnatska won the women’s event over Megan Nick of the U.S. Full results here.

LUGE ● The ninth and final stop of the 2019-20 World Cup circuit in Koenigssee (GER) saw more German dominance, with wins in the women’s and Doubles divisions, as well as seasonal titles.

Newcomer Anna Berreiter (20) won the women’s race for her second victory in the last three, but second-place Julia Taubitz (GER) was the seasonal winner with 965 points to 957 for Russia’s Tatiana Ivanova. American Summer Britcher finished fifth, just behind Berreiter, 637-523.

The German Doubles team of Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken won their fourth meet of the season in a tight duel with teammates Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt and won the seasonal title again, 872-847 over Wendl and Arlt, defending their 2019 crown.

Russian Semen Pavlichenko won the men’s racing by 0.03 over Austria’s Jonas Muller and countryman Roman Repilov, but it was Repilov coming out on top for the season by 765-749-741 over Dominik Fischnaller (ITA) and defending champ Pavlichenko. Full results here.

MODERN PENTATHLON ● The 2020 World Cup season opened in Cairo (EGY), with Hungary’s 35-year-old Adam Marosi showing he plans to be a contender this season. The Olympic bronze medalist in 2012 and World Champion in 2009, he out-scored Korea’s Woongtae Jun, 1,470-1,460 thanks to his big win in fencing and strong swimming performance.

Britain’s Joanna Muir used a strong finish in the Laser Run to take the women’s title, finishing with the same point total as Russian Uliana Batashova, but out-leaning her at the line. It was Muir’s first-ever individual World Cup medal!

The home fans had plenty to cheer in the Team Relay, as Egypt’s Eslam Hamad and Haydy Morsy and Ahmed Elgendy and Salma Abdelmaksoud went 1-2. Full results here.

NORDIC SKIING ● The Cross Country skiers were in Lahti (FIN) and home favorite Iivo Niskanen won his second event of the season in the 15 km Classical, besting overall leader Alexander Bolshunov (RUS).

Norway’s Therese Johaung won the women’s 10 km Classical for her astonishing 17th victory of the season, essentially giving her the seasonal title for the third time. Johaug claimed the all-time record for most distance-race wins with 63, surpassing countrywoman Marit Bjoergen. Full results here.

In the Nordic Combined racing, also in Lahti, Norway’s Jarl Magnus Riiber – who has already clinched the season title – failed to win a medal for the first time this season, finishing 10th! Instead, it was 2017-18 season champ Akito Watabe who got his first win of the season, , 2.9 seconds ahead of Jorgen Graabak (NOR). Full results here.

The Lahti festival was completed with the 999th and 1,000th ski jumping competitions in the history of the men’s World Cup and it was seasonal leader Stefan Kraft (AUT) and Karl Geiger (GER) who traded wins on the 130 m hill. They were 1-2 on Saturday and 2-1 on Sunday, leaving Kraft in front, 1,613-1,495 after 25 of 29 events. Full results here.

RUGBY ● The men’s Sevens Series came to the Los Angeles area – Carson, California to be exact – for the fifth of the 10 tournaments, with South Africa claiming its second title with a 29-24 win over Fiji in the final.

Fiji, Australia, South Africa and New Zealand won their pools and then the Fijians crushed Oz, 43-7 in their semi. The All Blacks shut down New Zealand, 17-0, in the other semi, leaving New Zealand to out-point Australia, 19-17, in the third-place game. Full results here.

Through five tournaments, New Zealand still leads with 93 points to 89 for the South Africans, 72 for Fiji and 67 for France in fourth.

SAILING ● In the Laser Radial World Championships off Melbourne (AUS), Dutch star (and reigning Olympic champ) Marit Bouwmeester won her fourth title, just holding off countrywoman Maxime Jonker, 42-44, after a bad medal race finished a week of difficult weather. Full results here.

The men’s and women’s RS:X World Championships finished on Saturday off Victoria (AUS), with more Dutch medals as Kiran Badloe won the title with 37 net points against Rio Olympic champ Dorian van Rijsselberghe (39) and Thomas Goyard (FRA: 56). Full results here.

Lilian van Geus (NED) won the women’s RS:X title with 42 points and had three wins – including the medal final – to beat Rio 2016 gold medalist Charline Picon (FRA: 51) and Israel’s Noy Drihan (52). Full results here.

SHOOTING ● USA Shooting got serious with more Olympic Trials events with the Spring Selection Match in Air Pistols in Ft. Benning, Georgia and the Shotgun Spring Selection in Tucson, Arizona.

At Ft. Benning, the women’s 10 m Air Pistol did not have an Olympic quota spot available, but the U.S. has two in the 25 m Sport Pistol. The top two were the same in both: Lexi Lagan and Sandra Uptagrafft. Lagan won the Spring Selection Match with 1,151 points to 1,144 from Katelyn Abeln. But the aggregate of the two stages of the Trials saw Lagan compile 2,294 points to 2,281 for Uptagrafft, with Abeln third at 2,265.

In the 25 m Sport Pistol, Lagan defeated Abeln in the Spring Selection Match again, 1,168-1,152 and both made the team. But Lagan and Uptagrafft were 1-2 in the final total with 2,332 and 2,298, with Abeln the first alternate at 2,281. Tweeted Lagan afterwards: “I still can’t fully comprehend that I am going to the Olympics this year! This is such an amazing journey. I am so excited to see what 2020 has in store for me!”

In the men’s events, the 10 m Air Pistol Spring Selection Match was won by Nick Mowrer (1,165) with James Hall (1,156) and Keith Sanderson third (1,149). The two-stage total had Mowrer and Hall make the Olympic Team, 2,328 and 2,295, with Hunter Battig third (2,288).

Sanderson came back to take the one qualifying spot for the team at 2,315 in the 25 m Sport Pistol; he won the Spring Selection Match at 1,162, ahead of Henry Leverett (1,148). Full results here.

In Tucson, the Shotgun Spring Selection picked the Trap team, where the U.S. has two slots in both men and women. Seth Inman won the three-day match with 191 points, ahead of Brian Burrows (188) and Derrick Mein (185). Mein topped the Olympic selection total, with 428 points, winning over Burrows (424) and Inman (422; alternate).

Kayle Browning and Madelynn Bernau both scored 176 points in the Spring Selection Match, just one ahead of Corey Cogdell-Unrein (175). Browning won the Olympic selection with 408 points, with Bernau (400) second and Ashley Carroll (399) third (alternate). Full results here.

SNOWBOARD ● The Parallel Giant Slalom was held at Blue Mountain in Canada, with Russian Dmitriy Loginov winning his first event of the season, just ahead of German Stefan Baumeister in the men’s division. Italy’s Roland Fischnaller won the seasonal title by 4,900-3,380 over Austria’s Benjamin Karl.

Ramona Hofmeister (GER) won her sixth event in the Parallel division (out of 10 events) for the season, and wrapped up both the overall Parallel crown and the Parallel Giant Slalom title. Full results here.

SPEED SKATING ● The ISU World Sprint and Allround Championships were held in Hamar (NOR) with Japan and the Netherlands taking the top honors.

Japanese sprinters won both divisions. Tatsuya Shinhama was second and first in the two 500 m races and first and third in the 1,000 m sprints to compile a total time of 137.465 seconds, 24/100ths ahead of Canada’s Laurent Dubreuil and 0.96 ahead of Min-Kyu Cha (KOR). Miho Takagi won her second World Sprint title in a tight battle with countrywoman Nao Kodaira, 148.870-150.150, with Olga Fatkulina (RUS) third (150.430). Takagi and Kodaira were 1-2 and 2-1 in the 500 m races, but Takagi won both 1,000 m events to clinch the crown. Brittany Bowe of the U.S. finished sixth overall.

The Allround title were won by the Dutch, with Patrick Roest winning his third men’s title (147.880), ahead of Sverre Lunde Pedersen (NOR: 149.277) and Seitaro Ichinohe (JPN: 149.310). Roest won the 1,000 m, 1,500 m, 5,000 m and the 10,000 m to dominate the event. Ireen Wust won her seventh World Allround title in similar fashion, winning the 1,500 m and finishing second in the 5,000 m to finish with a total time of 159.524 to 160.462 for Canada’s Ivanie Blondin and 160.631 for Antoinette de Jong (NED). Full results here.

SPORT CLIMBING ● The IFSC Pan American Championships were held at the Sender One Climbing facility near the Los Angeles International Airport, with American climbers dominating the men’s event. Colin Duffy (10 points), Zach Galla (16), Zander Waller (18) and Sean Bailey (48) claimed the top four places in the combined program (Speed/Bouldering/Lead).

Canada’s Alannah Yip won the women’s title with 15 points, well ahead of Alejandra Contreras of Chile (36) and American Lauren Bair (also 36) in third. Both Duffy and Yip qualified for the Tokyo Games as winners; further continental qualifiers are still to come. Full results here.

TABLE TENNIS ● The 2020 U.S. Olympic Trials were on at Santa Monica College, with furious competition for the three spots available to American players for Tokyo. In the men’s competition, Kanak Jha was already qualified for the Games because of his strong world ranking. Going into Sunday’s final three rounds, Zhou Xin and Nikhil Kumar had 4-0 records, with Tom Feng at 3-1. Xin and Kumar both won their first two matches and with 6-0 records, faced off in the final, but both were on the team. Kumar, 17, took the first two sets, 11-8, 11-9 and then Xin tied it with 11-8 and 11-2 wins. But Kumar came back with 11-9 and 11-7 to take the Trials title and joins Jha as teenagers on the American team.

The women’s situation was similar, with Lily Zhang already in via her world ranking. In the Sunday finals, Liu Juan had a 4-0 record going in with three others at 3-1. Liu skipped through her matches to get to the final at 6-0, with Wang Hujing coming in at 5-1 and on the team. The matches were close, but Liu swept the sets by 15-13, 11-9, 11-6 and 13-11.

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