TSX REPORT: Fab T&F weekend for McLaughlin-Levrone, Florida men, Long, Valby; media blows up over Clark non-selection

Three wins (and two world leads) for Mississippi's McKenzie Long at the NCAA Champs! (Photo: Reed Jones, courtesy Ole Miss Sports)

The Sports Examiner: Chronicling the key competitive, economic and political forces shaping elite sport and the Olympic Movement.★

To get The Sports Examiner by e-mail: sign up here!

Friends: This site is free, but we have expenses, especially for technical support. If you can support our coverage, please donate here. Your enthusiasm is the reason this site continues. Thank you. ★


1. McLaughlin-Levrone, Lyles dominate in New York
2. NCAA men: Surprises galore, as Florida three-peats!
3. NCAA women: Long triples, Valby, Smith double, Hogs run wild!
4. Media outraged over Clark being skipped for Paris
5. Now the Milan Cortina 2026 ski jumps aren’t ready

● This was quite a weekend for track & field fans, punctuated Sunday by a spectacular 48.75 400 m performance from Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone in New York in stiff wind conditions, fastest in 2024. There was also a 19.77 200 m win for Noah Lyles, plus multiple world leads at the European Champs in Rome. And what about Fred Kerley?

● Amid upset after upset at the NCAA men’s championships in Eugene, Florida somehow threaded its way through a crowded field and won its third straight team title, finishing third in the 4×400 m relay to win by a point over Auburn, 41-40.

● The stars were out at the NCAA women’s championships, with Mississippi’s McKenzie Long taking the 100, getting two world leads in the 200 m plus a fab second leg on the 4×100 m for three wins. Distance star Parker Valby of Florida won twice, giving her five NCAA titles in one academic year!

● News media across the nation blew up after news leaked on Friday that WNBA rookie sensation Caitlin Clark would not be named to the U.S. Olympic basketball team by USA Basketball. It was reported her popularity was a problem (why?), but the choices were instead of other, veteran WNBA players.

● More complications for the Milan Cortina organizers of the 2026 Winter Games, as the ski jumps at Val di Fiemme will not be available for the FIS World Cup season – the expected test event for 2026 – due to renovations. Instead, tests will be made in the summer (?) of 2025.

Panorama: Paris 2024 (open-water test event canceled due to rains and sewage overflows in the Seine) = European Olympic Committees (Krakow-Malopolska yielded €3 million operating surplus) = Archery (no. 1 Kaufhold shines in SoCal Showdown) = Badminton (China wins for at Indonesia Open) = Basketball (U.S. men win again in FIBA U-18 AmeriCup) = Beach Volleyball (U.S.’s Cheng and Hughes impressive in Elite 16 win in Ostrava) = Canoe-Kayak (Fox sisters claim three silvers in Slalom World Cup II) = Cycling (3: Roglic takes Criterium du Dauphine; Kopecky takes Women’s Tour of Britain; Bruni and Hoell takes World Cup Downhill) = Football (Colombia trounces U.S. men, 5-1, in friendly) = Gymnastics (Brazil takes four golds at Pan Am Rhytnmics) = Shooting (McIntosh wins World Cup women’s 50 m Rifle/3 Positions) ●

McLaughlin-Levrone, Lyles dominate in New York

If you’re a track & field fan, this was quite a weekend, with the NCAA Championships in Eugene, the European Championships ongoing in Rome and the USATF NYC Grand Prix on Sunday. All together, 11 world-leading marks (or ties) in eight events were made:

Men/Long Jump: 8.41 m (27-7 1/4), Simon Ehammer (SUI)
Men/Long Jump: 8.65 m (28-4 1/2), Miltiadis Tentoglou (GRE) (twice)
Men/Decathlon: 8,961, Leo Neugebauer (GER)
Women/200 m: 21.95, McKenzie Long (USA)
Women/200 m: 21.83, McKenzie Long (USA)
Women/400 m: 48.89, Nickisha Pryce (JAM)
Women/400 m: 48.75, Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone (USA)
Women/100 m hurdles: 12.31, Cyrena Samba-Mayela (FRA)
Women/4×400 m: 3:17.96, Arkansas (GBR-JAM-USA)
Women/Triple Jump: 14.85 m (48-8 3/4) (tie), Ana Peleteiro-Compaore (ESP)
Women/Heptathlon: 6,848, Nafi Thiam (BEL)

At the NYC Grand Prix, the Icahn Stadium stands were full, but pesky winds bedeviled the sprinters and jumpers, with headwinds facing everyone on the straightaway.

Everyone except Olympic and World Champion Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone.

Running only her fifth race of the year and first at 400 m, she started in lane five and had made up the staggers on all three racers ahead of her with 180 m to go and ran unchallenged to the finish – clearly impacted by the headwind on the straight – in a world-leading 48.75!

That’s just 5/100ths behind the American Record of 48.70 by Sanya Richards-Ross from 2006 and 1/100th off her lifetime best of 48.74 from 2023 (no. 10 performer ever). She will now look forward to the U.S. Olympic Trials back in Oregon, beginning on 21 June. Far behind in second was Talitha Diggs in 50.91 and Jamaica’s Stacey Ann Williams in third in 50.94.

The last race of the day was the men’s 200 m, featuring World Champion Noah Lyles in his season opener at the distance, but technical issues delayed his start. A recall was made due to block slippage in lane five for younger brother Josephus Lyles, and then multiple athletes asked for new blocks, which had been a problem all day.

After an 11-minute delay, everyone who wanted new blocks got them and meet staff members stood on the back of everyone’s blocks for the start. Starting from lane seven, Lyles made up the stagger on Brandon Carnes to his outside just 80 m into the race and stormed into the straight for an impressive 19.77 win into a 1.6 m/s headwind – statistically worth 0.09 – so he could have run 19.68 with zero wind!

Former NCAA champ Joseph Fahnbulleh (LBA) came on with his trademark finish, from fifth to second, in 20.15, with Josephus Lyles third in 20.51.

The wind held down performances, but there was a lot of interesting things going on.

The men’s 100 m was wild, with a recall and a warning to the field, then 2022 World Champion Fred Kerley false-started. He said his blocks slipped, had them re-set, but then walked away from the track. Jamaica’s Sandrey Davison, in lane one, also asked for – and got – a new set of blocks, didn’t like those and was moved to Kerley’s lane five.

About eight minutes later, the race finally started and former Stanford star Udodi Onwuzurike (NGR) got the lead after about 10 m and held on to win in a modest 10.24 (wind -0.7 m/s). Kendal Williams of the U.S. closed for second in 10.25 and Pjai Austin was third in 10.26.

Then things got crazy. Kerley was not disqualified, but was shown as “did not start.” Signed with ASICS – one of the meet sponsors – in 2023, he was wearing Puma spikes! He said afterwards:

“They was just taking too long. I was requesting for some new blocks, one of my pads was broken. I slipped the first time and I slipped the second time and I’m not going to [have that] happen a third time. … I was not DQ’d.”

● Asked about the switch from ASICS to Puma, he said “I ain’t switch it up. I left my bag at the airport.”

Chris Chavez of Citius Magazine reported later a statement from ASICS: “ASICS and Fred Kerley have mutually parted ways and he is no longer an ASICS sponsored athlete. We wish him the best in his career.” Wow; not the last you will hear about this story. Added Kerley: “This is a small meet; the bigger meet is in two weeks.”

London 2012 champ Kirani James (GRN) got the early lead in the 400 m, but there were four in contention down the final straight. Chris Bailey of the U.S. came up in lane seven to challenge in the last 10 m, but James broke the tape in a seasonal best of 44.55, then Bailey in 44.73 and Rio 2016 champion Wayde van Niekerk (RSA) in 44.74.

Mexico’s Jesus Tonatiu Lopez – the national record holder – had the lead after the bell over Isaiah Jewitt of the U.S. and could not be passed. He held off a fading Jewett and a charging Wes Ferguson of the U.S. to win in 1:44.96, with Ferguson at 1:45.06, Joey Hoey at 1:45.35 and then Jewett fourth in 1:45.41.

The men’s 1,500 m was an encouraging win for 2022 World Champion Jake Wightman (GBR), who ripped off a 52.59 final lap to win in a seasonal best of 3:34.01, edging Americans Eric Holt (3:34.05 lifetime best), Hobbs Kessler (3:34.41), Vince Ciattei (3:34.62) and a lifetime best for distance star Grant Fisher (3:34.90).

Trey Cunningham, the 2022 Worlds silver medalist, ran away with the 110 m hurdles in 13.21 (-0.8), leading almost from the start. Jamaica’s Rasheed Broadbell came up late for second in 13.28.

In the field events, Dontavious Hill got a lifetime best in the high jump and was the only one to clear 2.26 (7-5), ahead of Earnie Sears at 2.23 m (7-3 3/4), and Marquis Dendy, the 2016 World Indoor Champion, took the long jump at 8.07 m (26-5 3/4) in the fifth round, just ahead of Carey McLeod (JAM) at 7.97 m (26-1 3/4).

Donald Scott of the U.S. won the triple jump with his second-round try of 16.94 m (55-7), with Jordan Scott (JAM) second at 16.92 m (55-6 1/4). American Donavan Banks won the javelin at 79.20 m (259-10), ahead of Jordan Davis (78.72 m/258-3) and Curtis Thompson (78.63 m/257-11).

The women’s 100 m was run into 2.1 m/s headwind, so the times were slow. On the outside, Rio 2016 relay gold medalist Morolake Akinosun had the lead in mid-race, but in the middle of the track, three-time U.S. champ Aleia Hobbs got to the front at 80 m. But she was out-leaned by Nigeria’s Favour Ofili (11.18), and by Akinosun in second (11.20); Hobbs was third at 11.21.

Two-time Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah of Jamaica was again having trouble, finishing ninth in 11.48 and having to be carried off the track for treatment with a lower right leg injury. Her prospects for Paris do not look good.

Worlds 200 m silver winner Gabby Thomas was fourth in the 100 m in 10.34, then doubled back and was only third off the turn in the women’s 200 m, but then charged home and ran away from the field to win in an impressive 22.42 into a 3.1 m/s headwind. Tamara Clark and Jenna Prandini were distant in second and third in 22.79 and 22.96.

Sage Hurta-Klecker took over on the final lap to win the women’s 800 m in 2:00.33, just ahead of Olivia Baker (2:00.73) and Sammy Watson (2:00.91).

A fabulous field in the 100 m hurdles, but World Indoor Champion Devynne Charlton (BAH) not only got the best start, but held her form beautifully and won in 12.56 into a headwind (-1.9). American Alaysha Johnson came hard at the end for second in 12.58 and world-record holder Tobi Amusan (NGR) got third in 12.66.

Vashti Cunningham had no trouble in the women’s high jump, clearing 1.95 m (6-4 3/4) on her first try. Canada’s World Indoor champ Sarah Mitton took the shot at 20.15 m (66-1 1/2), with Tokyo silver medalist Raven Saunders of the U.S. – now back from a whereabouts suspension – second at 19.11 m (62-8 1/2).

World leader and World Indoor Champion Tara Davis-Woodhall was long jumping on the far side of the track and far away from the grandstand, but it didn’t matter. She exploded in round three, reaching 7.14 m (23-5 1/4) into a headwind, a mark no one else has reached this year. Fellow Americans Jasmine Moore and Quanesha Burks were 2-3 in 6.88 m (22-7) and 6.86 m (22-6 1/4).

The women’s javelin was a surprise, with Kara Winger – who retired after her sensational second-place finish at the 2022 Worlds in Eugene – back in action and winning at 63.22 m (207-5), just short of the 64.00 Olympic qualifying standard, but now no. 11 on the world list for 2024. She is qualified to compete at the Olympic Trials. Former American Record holder Maggie Malone Hardin was second at 59.93 m (196-7).

Four events were held on Saturday, with Alex Rose (SAM) winning the men’s discus at 66.18 m (217-1) and Daniel Haugh of the U.S. winning the hammer at 77.76 m (255-1). World leader Yaime Perez (CUB) took the women’s discus with her first throw of 68.31 m (224-1) and Rachel Tanczos of the U.S. won the hammer at 73.55 m (241-3).

Meanwhile, the European Championships are on in Rome, at the Stadio Olimpico, with startling results in the men’s long jump and women’s hurdles!

First, Swiss decathlete (and long jumper) Simon Ehammer got a world lead at 8.41 m (27-7 1/4) in the qualifying round! But that was nothing compared to the final, where Olympic champ Miltiadis Tentoglou (GRE) went wild: a world-leading 8.42 m (27-7 1/2) in the first round, then 8.49 m (27-10 1/4) in round three and 8.65 m (28-4 1/2) in round five, which he matched in round six!

It moves Tentoglou to equal-13th all-time and was a meet record. Italian star Matteo Furlani’s 8.38 m (27-6) world junior record in second was almost lost in the excitement, with Ehammer third at 8.31 m (27-3 1/4).

The women’s 100 m hurdles was equally special, with France’s Cyrena Samba-Mayela improving her lifetime best by 0.21 in Rome, first to 12.43 in the semis, then to a fabulous 12.31 in the final (+0.8), now equal-10th all-time! She beat Swiss Ditaji Kambundji (12.40) and Poland’s Pia Skrzyszowska (12.42), both of whom got national records.

In the men’s 100 m, Tokyo Olympic champ Lamont Marcell Jacobs (ITA) ran a season’s best of 10.02 to win (+0.7), with teammate Chituru Ali second in 10.05. Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen checked off one of his 2024 goals with a win in the 5,000 m in 13:20.11, taking the lead at the bell and winning over George Mills (GBR: 13:21.38) and Dominic Lobalu (SUI: 13:21.61).

France’s Gabriel Tual made his move with 200 m to go and won the men’s 800 m at 1:44.87, beating Mohamed Attaoui (ESP: 1:45.20) and Catalin Tecuceanu (1:45.40). Italy’s Lorenzo Simonelli got a huge win in the 110 m hurdles in 13.05 (+0.6), moving him to no. 2 this season and easily winning over Enrique Llopis (ESP: 13.16).

Italy went 1-2 in the men’s Half Marathon, with Yemaneberhan Crippa – the 2022 Euro 10,000 m champ – winning in the final 300 m in 1:01:03, with teammate Pietro Riva (1:01:04) surging for silver over German Amanal Petros (1:01:07).

Italy’s Leonardo Fabbri dominated the shot as expected, winning with 22.45 m (7308). And Slovenia’s giant 2022 World Champion, Kristjian Ceh, won the discus at a modest 68.08 m (223-4), handing Lithuania’s Mykolas Alekna his first loss of the season (third at 67.458 m/221-5).

Tokyo Olympic champion Wojciech Nowicki (POL) won his third straight European title in the hammer with a season’s best of 80.95 m (265-7), moving to no. 3 on the world list. Hungary’s Bence Halasz was second at 80.49 m (264-1).

In the women’s 100 m final, Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith won her second European title – and first since 2018 – with a 10.99 win (+0.7) , with Poland’s Ewa Swoboda barely out-leaning Zaynab Dosso (ITA), with both in 11.02.

Irish star Ciara Mageean – silver winner in 2022 – closed hard of the final turn and sprinted to the 1,500 m victory in 4:04.66, ahead of Georgia Bell (GBR: 4:05.33). France’s Alice Finot made a big move on the final lap to win the Steeple in 9:16.22, with two-time Euro champ Gesa Krause (GER) second in 9:18.06, just ahead of Elizabeth Bird (GBR: 9:18.39).

Italy’s Nadia Battoclietti won the 5,000 m in 14:35.29, moving to no. 13 on the world list for 2024. Karoline Grovdal (NOR) had to settle for silver after being out-sprinted, then won the Half Marathon easily in 1:08:09.

Ukraine’s Yaroslava Mahuchikh defended her 2022 European title with a seasonal best of 2.01 m (6-7) on her second attempt, to defeat 2022 bronze winner Angelina Topic (SRB), who made 1.97 m (6-5 1/2). Spain’s Tokyo bronze winner Ana Peleteiro-Compaore equaled the world lead with her fourth-round triple jump of 14.85 m (48-8 3/4) and won over Tugba Danismaz (TUR: 14.57 m/47-9 3/4 national record).

Dutch shot star Jessica Schilder defended her 2022 Euro gold with a win at 18.77 m (61-7), ahead of teammate Jorinde van Klinken (18.67 m/61-3). Croatia’s Sandra Elkasevic (nee Perkovic) won her seventh European title in the discus with a seasonal best of 67.04 m (219-11), with van Klinken second at 65.99 m (216-6).

Belgium’s two-time Olympic heptathlon gold medalist, Nafi Thiam, showed she is ready to defend, winning the heptathlon by more than 200 points with a world-leading 6,848 – her third European title – her third-best score ever!

Ireland won the Mixed 4×400 m over Italy, 3:09.92 to 3:10.69. The Europeans continue through Wednesday.

NCAA men: Surprises galore, as Florida three-peats!

The final day of the men’s NCAA Track & Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon hardly followed the script, but an exciting meet came down to the 4×400 m relay to determine the team champion.

The men’s 100 m was a stunner, with Britain’s Louis Hinchliffe in the mix off the start, but came on strong in the last 30 m and got to the line first in a lifetime best of 9.95 (wind: 0.2 m/s), ahead of national co-leader Favour Ashe (NGR-Auburn) in lane two at 9.99. Hinchliffe had never broken 10 seconds with legal wind before, and moved to no. 10 in the world for 2024 and may have run himself onto the British team for Paris 2024!

Alabama’s Tarsis Orogot (UGA) was the favorite in the 200 m off his 19.75 seasonal best, and the race was no contest. But it was Penn State’s Cheickna Traore (CIV) who had the lead by the 50 m mark and stormed into the straight unopposed, winning in 19.95 (-0.1). Behind him, South Florida’s Saminu Abdul-Rasheed (GHA) moved up in the final 25 m for second, but was passed at the line by Florida senior Robert Gregory for second, 20.08 to 20.12, with Orogot fourth (20.14).

The world leader in the 400 m, Canada’s Christopher Morales Williams (Georgia) was the 400 m favorite, but USC star Johnnie Blockberger and Texas A&M’s Auhmad Robinson held the lead going into the final straight. But Morales Williams was strong, moving up steadily and winning in the final 50 m in 44.47. Alabama’s Samuel Ogazi (NGR) also moved late to get second (44.52), ahead of JeVaughn Powell (Florida: 44.54) and Blockberger (44.90).

The men’s 800 m had collegiate leader Sam Whitmarsh (Texas A&M) as the favorite, but Clemson’s Tarees Rhoden (JAM) had the early lead over 2023 runner-up Yusuf Bizimana (GBR-Texas), were 1-2 at the bell and maintained those spots into the final straight. But when the sprinting started, it was Whitmarsh charging to the lead through the traffic, but on the outside, Virginia’s Shane Cohen was flying in the final 50 m and got to the line first in 1:44.97, with Whitmarsh second in 1:45.10; Rhodes faded to fourth in 1:45.70.

The 1,500 m started slowly at 62.5 for the first 400, then 62.0 for the second 400, and with Colin Sahlman (Northern Arizona) barely in front at the bell and holding on through 1,400 m. Oregon’s Elliott Cook took the lead with 50 m left, but Washington’s Joe Waskom – the 2022 NCAA champ – was pushing hard and won at the line in 3:39.48 to 3:39.57; Waskom finished in 52.6, while Sahlman faded to fourth in 3:39.92.

That’s three NCAA 1,500 m titles in a row for Washington, after Nathan Green won last year; that’s the first single-school three-peat in the event since Don Paige and Sydney Maree for Villanova in 1979-80-81.

Virginia’s Nathan Mountain, fourth last year, led the 3,000 m Steeple with two laps to go and at the bell, with three close behind. Georgetown’s Parker Stokes – third in 2022 – moved up on the backstraight and after Mountain took a hard final water jump, surged on the straight and won going away in 8:24.58 for his third top-8 finish in the last four years. Mountain was second in 8:25.71.

The 5,000 m was typically slow, and pack was still all in contact with three laps to go. Then Northern Arizona’s Brodey Hasty got to the front with two laps left, and Harvard’s Graham Blanks – the NCAA Cross Country champ – blew into the lead on the first turn and the running was on. Blanks pulled a pack of five away from the field at the bell, with Nico Young (NAU) closest. Young took the lead with 200 m left, with North Carolina’s Parker Wolfe and defending champ Ky Robinson (AUS-Stanford) chasing him into the straight. Wolfe had the best speed and sprinted away to win in 13:54.43, with Young and Robinson second and third, in 13:54.65 and 13:55.00.

All eyes were on Auburn frosh – and national leader – Ja’Kobe Tharp in the 110 m hurdles, but Nebraska’s Darius Luff was in front over the first hurdle and ran clean to the line at 13.19 (+0.1), moving to no. 8 in the world in 2024. Tharp was behind, but moved hard in the last half, taking second over the ninth hurdle and finishing at 13.20. Texas A&M’s Ja’Qualon Scott also came late to get third in 13.27.

Defending champ Chris Robinson of Alabama ran faster than he did to win in 2023, but no one could touch Texas Tech’s Caleb Dean in the 400 m hurdles. Fourth last year, he was well in front on the final turn and sailed home with a lifetime best of 47.23, moving to no. 4 on the world list for 2024! Robinson was good, a clear second in 47.98, 0.15 better than his winning time last season.

On the infield, Jamaican Romaine Beckford (Arkansas) was the only one to clear 2.26 m (7-5) and defended his 2023 title, when he was at South Florida. Salif Mane (USA) of Fairleigh Dickinson, fifth last year, got off a fabulous first triple jump of 17.14 m (56-2 3/4) and no one could catch him! Miami senior (and 2023 runner-up) Russell Robinson got close, reaching 17.13 m (56-2 1/4) in round five, but had to settle for second.

The decisive action in the discus came in round three, as South Africa’s Francois Prinsloo reached 63.61 m (208-4) and was the clear winner over USC frosh Racquil Broderick who got out to 61.77 m (202-8) in round four.

Let’s save the relays for last. In the 4×100 m, Auburn took over with Dario Matau (RSA) and Maka Charamba (ZIM) in the last half of the race, winning in 38.03, the fourth-fastest mark in collegiate history. Only the U.S. and Canada have run faster in the world in 2024! Defending champion LSU came up late to edge Houston for second, 38.21 to 38.25.

The meet came down to the 4×400 m relay, with Auburn at 40, Florida at 35 and USC and Alabama at 32, but the Tigers did not have a 4×4 team. Alabama or USC would have to win to take the team title, but if neither won and Florida got third, it would win. Its 400 m third-placer Powell ran a brilliant 44.34 second leg to break the race open and hand off first, but the lead shrank with Rios Prude (44.91) on the third leg with Texas A&M’s Kimar Farguharson (JAM) splitting 44.38 to pass almost together.

Florida’s Jenoah McKiver looked good on anchor coming into the final straight, but A&M’s Robinson, only eighth in the 400 m, stunned over the final 100 m, passed a stumbling McKiver, and head-bobbed a 43.20 split to win in a collegiate-leading 2:58.37, a meet record! McKiver slowed badly in the final 30 m, running 43.91 and was passed by Arkansas’ James Benson II’s 43.18 (!) split to get second in 2:58.83, to 2:58.98 for Florida in third.

That third-place finish gave the Gators six points and a 41-40 win over Auburn for the national outdoor title from 2012-24, the third in a row for Florida and coach Mike Holloway. It’s his seventh outdoor men’s title and 12th national title including indoor track. And he had his women’s squad ready for an assault on another title on Saturday.

NCAA women: Long triples, Valby, Smith double, Hogs run wild!

Saturday’s brilliant final day of the NCAA Track & Field Championships in Eugene, Oregon saw a triple win (with help) from McKenzie Long of Mississippi, a never-before-seen “super-sweep” in the 400 m, multiple collegiate records, and meet doubles from Florida’s Parker Valby and Texas’ Ackelia Smith. This was special.

The first running event, the 4x100m was a showcase for Ole Miss’s Long, charging into the lead on the second leg and then Gabrielle Mathews ran a fabulous curve and Jahniya Bowers finished it in 42.34. LSU and South Carolina went 2-3 in 42.57 and 42.63.

Long came back in the 100 m, but got out behind LSU’s Brianna Lyston (JAM) and Oregon’s Jadyn Mays (Oregon), but came on in mid-race and was in front with 40 m to go and got an impressive win in a wind-aided 10.82 (+2.2 m/s). Lyston held on for second (10.89w), but Mays (10.95w) was passed by Rosemary Chukwuma (NGR-Texas Tech: 10.90w) for third.

Long was the big favorite in the 200 m, improving her world lead to 21.95 in the heats. And she delivered, staying close on the turn, then bursting into the lead over JaMeesia Ford (South Carolina) and Mays, and rolling to a sensational win in 21.83 (+1.0), another world lead and tying the great Evelyn Ashford for no. 10 on the all-time U.S. list! Ford, a frosh, got second in 22.08 and Mays was third in 22.19. Next up for Ford: the Olympic Trials.

Arkansas came into the 400 m with the top three performers on the season, with Nickisha Pryce (JAM), Kaylyn Brown and Amber Anning (GBR). Arkansas was lined up in lanes 5-6-7-8 and while Rosey Effiong moved best early, Pryce took over around the final turn and finished strong with a collegiate record and world-leading 48.89! Brown chased her home in 49.13, then Anning (49.59) and Effiong in 49.72, a 1-2-3-4 sweep, reportedly the first time ever in NCAA history!

That scored 29 points for the Razorbacks and gave them the meet lead at 44-43, and the four stars now rank 1-2-4-5 on the 2024 world list! Wow!

LSU’s Michaela Rose came in as the defending champ and had the four fastest times in the nation this season. Rose took over with 300 m to go and led NCAA Indoor champ Juliette Whitaker (Stanford) with 200 left and challenging into the straight. Whittaker had an extra gear, however and pushed away as Rose faded, winning in 1:59.61. Her teammate, Roisin Willis got second (2:00.17) with a final 10 m charge to pass Oklahoma State’s Gabija Galvydyte (LTU: 2:00.23). Rose ended up fourth in 2:01.03.

Defending champion Maia Ramsden (NZL-Harvard) stayed near the front of the 1,500 m on a slow pace, then took off with about 700 m to go and threw down a 61-second lap that gave her a commanding lead at the bell and she cruised home with a second straight title in 4:06.62. She’s the first repeater in this event since 2003-04 when Mississippi State’s Tiffany McWilliams did it.

Behind Ramsden, Kimberley May (NZL-Providence) passed home favorite Klaudia Kazimierska (POL-Oregon) around the final turn for second, 4:08.07 to 4:08.22.

In the Steeple, Alabama frosh Doris Lemngole (KEN) and defending champ Olivia Markezich (Notre Dame) both broke from the pack with three laps left. Lemngole had the lead at the bell and the Kenyan was too fast between the barriers and was well ahead out of the final water jump; she rolled home in a collegiate record of 9:15.24, now no. 7 on the 2024 world list! Markezich ran a lifetime best of 9:17.36 (no. 2 all-time collegiate; no. 9 worldwide in 2024) for second; Janette Schraft (Iowa State) surged on the straight for third in 9:34.82.

The Parker Valby show was on in the 5,000 m – she was the defending champion – and took the lead on the second lap. She and Alabama’s Hilda Olemomoi (KEN) – second in the 10,000 m – broke away with 2,400 m to go, then Valby pushed away with 1,600 m left, heading for the win and looking for the Olympic qualifying mark of 14:52.00. She was at 13:42.60 at the bell and needed a near-69 second lap to get the mark, but came up just short with a lifetime best and collegiate record of 14:52.18 (69.59).

It’s her fifth NCAA title in one academic year – reportedly the first time it’s been done – with cross country, the 3,000 and 5,000 m and now the 5-10. And Florida for 10 important team points. Olemomi was second at 15:10.04 and Baily Herstenstein (Colorado) was third in 15:10.98.

Florida needed a big race from Grace Stark in the 100 m hurdles to stay in the team race and they got it, as she took over on the fifth hurdle and stormed to a 12.47 victory (-0.5) , now no. 9 on the 2024 world list. Washington State’s Maribel Caicedo (ECU) was a solid second in 12.56 and UCF’s Rayniah Jones came on late for third in 12.59. Stark moved up from fourth in 2021 and fifth in 2023 to own the podium this time.

Arkansas needed Rachel Glenn’s help in the 400 m hurdles, especially after she failed to score in the high jump, despite being the collegiate co-leader coming in and the NCAA Indoor champ. Defending champ Savannah Sutherland (CAN-Michigan) had other ideas and led the race on the backstraight and the turn over Glenn and looked good over the ninth hurdle. But USC’s Jasmine Jones had the speed on the straight, passed Glenn and then took the lead from Sutherland with about 20 m left and won in 53.15, moving her to no. 3 in the world in 2024!

Sutherland got a lifetime best of 53.26 in second (no. 4 in 2024) and Glenn was third in 54.11, scoring six points and extending Arkansas’ team lead.

Entering the final running event, the 4×400 m, Florida had a 59-53 lead on Arkansas, but how could the Razorbacks lose after super-sweeping the 400 m?

Anning went into the lead right away (50.52) and passed first to Effiong, who rolled to a 10 m lead on Georgia. Effiong ran 49.21 and Pryce blew up the race completely (49.20) and passed to Kaylin Brown on anchor (49.05) for a collegiate record of 3:17.96!

That’s by far the fastest in the world this year, the no. 10 performance in the event all-time, and the fastest ever by a non-national team! And the win clinched the team title for the Hogs, 63-59, over Florida, with Texas third (41).

The high jump lost 2021 champion Glenn of Arkansas at 1.82 m (5-11 1/2) in 13th. Defending champ Charity Hufnagel (Kentucky) was 12th and out at the same height. In the meantime, Rose Yerboah (GHA-Illinois), Elena Kulichenko (CYP-Georgia) and Temitope Adeshina (NGR-Texas Tech) all made 1.97 m (6-5 1/2) – all lifetime bests – and all also reached the Olympic qualifying standard for Paris!

All three missed 2.00 m (6-6 3/4), and Yeboah and Kulichenko decided to share the title, with Adeshina third.

Texas’ Ackelia Smith (JAM) completed the long jump-triple jump double, moving to no. 5 on the world list for 2024 at 14.52 m (47-7 3/4) in the fourth round. Three of her jumps would have won, with Darja Sopova (LAT-Illinois) second at 14.01 m (45-11 3/4).

National leader Veronica Fraley (Vanderbilt) won the discus with her fourth-round throw – a lifetime best – of 63.66 m (208-10), with Jayden Ulrich (Louisville) second at 63.05 m (206-10) from the second round.

Collegiate leader Timara Chapman (Texas A&M) stayed consistent to lead the heptathlon, placing third in the 100 m hurdles and high jump, seventh in the shot, fifth in the 200 m, second in the long jump and fourth in the javelin to enter the 800 m with a 116-point lead. Chapman finished third in her heat of the 800 m, and seventh overall to wrap up the title at 6,339. Notre Dame’s Jadin O’Brien got a lifetime best in second at 6.234.

Spectacular. Just spectacular.

Media outraged over Clark being skipped for Paris

A meltdown is the only way to describe the reaction to reports of USA Basketball skipping over Indiana Fever rookie Caitlin Clark for its 2024 U.S. team for Paris.

USA Today’s Christine Brennan posted on Saturday:

“Two other sources, both long-time U.S. basketball veterans with decades of experience in the women’s game, told USA TODAY Sports Friday that concern over how Clark’s millions of fans would react to what would likely be limited playing time on a stacked roster was a factor in the decision making. If true, that would be an extraordinary admission of the tension that this multi-million-dollar sensation, who signs autographs for dozens of children before and after every game, has caused for the old guard of women’s basketball. The two people spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter.”

The Associated Press reported that Diana Taurasi, a five-time gold medal winner, will try for a sixth gold at age 42 and will be joined by Olympic veterans Napheesa Collier, Chelsea Gray, Brittney Griner, Jewell Loyd, Breanna Stewart and A’ja Wilson.

Griner, Stewart and Taurasi played on the 2016 and 2020 winners, with Collier, Gray, Loyd and Wilson on the Tokyo 2020 team. Tokyo women’s 3×3 gold medal winners Kelsey Plum and Jackie Young, are also to be named.

Three members of the 2022 FIBA World Cup-winning team also made the Paris squad: Kahleah Copper, Sabrina Ionescu and Alyssa Thomas.

Los Angeles Times columnist Bill Plaschke, almost exploded:

“What this team needs is a reason for the casual fan to watch.

“With the roster as currently constituted, none of that is happening. I can confirm this from experience. I have covered 10 Olympics and rarely did I venture to the women’s tournament because there was little interest and no buzz amid solid veterans playing to a foregone conclusion.

“With Clark, everything changes. With Clark, there will be deafening buzz, overwhelming interest, millions watching.

“With Clark on the team, even if she just plays a few minutes a game, the greatness of the USA women’s game and its newfound popularity will be amplified, accentuated and celebrated.

“And isn’t that the role of the USA women’s basketball committee? To not only win a gold medal, but to make that medal shine by putting the USA dynasty in the best possible light?

“How is a team without Caitlin Clark doing this? What sort of discussions about the future of USA women’s basketball would not include her? What on earth are they thinking?”

USA Basketball has been silent and has not yet announced its Paris team. But it is getting lots of attention.

Clark said Sunday, “I’m excited for the girls that are on the team. I know it’s the most competitive team in the world and I know it could have gone either way: me being on the team or me not being on the team. I’m going to be rooting them on to win gold. I was a kid that grew up watching the Olympics, so it will be fun to watch them.

“Honestly, no disappointment. It just gives me something to work for; it’s a dream. Hopefully one day I can be there. I think it’s just a little more motivation. You remember that. Hopefully when four years comes back around, I can be there.”

Now the Milan Cortina 2026 ski jumps aren’t ready

“The facility on which the competitions for the 2026 Olympic Games will take place will not be ready in time for the planned World Cup date.”

That’s from the International Ski & Snowboard Federation (FIS), which announced Friday:

“There has been one change to the ski jumping World Cup calendar for the coming winter, and it concerns the World Cup in Predazzo (ITA). The World Cup in Val di Fiemme, which was also supposed to be a test for the 2026 Olympic Games, has been canceled. …

“Last week, the FIS was informed by the Organizing Committee of the Olympic Winter Games, Milano Cortina 2026, that the ski jumping facility in Val di Fiemme will not be completed in time to host the 2025 test event, the Ski Jumping World Cup on 11 and 12 January 2025.

“The reason for the cancellation was communicated by the Province of Trento, which is responsible for the management and handover of the venue.

“There are reports of considerable delays in the construction of the facility. The venue is expected to be handed over at the end of April 2025.”

FIS Race Director Sandro Pertile (ITA) explained that there is no reason for worry:

“The facility should be ready in April or May 2025, we have been given a binding promise. We will therefore organize Grand Prix competitions at the facility in summer 2025 as part of our summer competition series. We will hold individual competitions, men’s super team and mixed team competitions, all as planned. Only in the summer.

“This event will definitely give us the important experience and testing we need before competing at the Olympic Games.”

The delays at Val di Fiemme come on top of the rushed construction schedule for the new sliding track being built in Cortina d’Ampezzo, also designated for test events in March of 2025. That construction effort passed its first test, of a small initial section, with the work continuing on an aggressive schedule.


● Olympic Games 2024: Paris ● One of the issues being watched carefully in the run-up to the Games is the water quality in the Seine River, to be used for open-water swimming and triathlon.

An open-water swimming test event scheduled for this week has been canceled, due to heavy rains which created overflow discharges into the river, making the pollution levels too high. Agence France Presse reported that discharge levels of 349 cubic sq. m per second, vs. the desired level of 100.

One of the new treatment reservoirs built to handle such overflows has not yet begun service, but will later in June. A first reservoir was opened in April, and the cleaning of the river to once again allow swimming has been a signature effort of the City of Paris attached to the Games, at a cost of about $1.5 billion.

● European Olympic Committees ● Noted during the 53rd EOC General Assembly in Bucharest (ROU) were the good results of the III European Games in Poland last year. Said EOC head Spyros Capralos (GRE):

“I am also delighted to reveal that following the financial success of the European Games in Krakow and Malopolska, we will redistribute €3 million [~$3.24 million U.S.] to the NOCs – €500 for each participating athlete. This further underlines the EOC’s commitment to ensuring the NOCs receive the most comprehensive support we have ever been able to offer.”

The General Assembly also formally approved Istanbul as the host for the 2027 European Games.

● Archery ● World no. 1 Casey Kaufhold of the U.S. was a clear winner at the Easton Foundations SoCal Showdown in Chula Vista, California.

Kaufhold, 20, defeated Gabriela Schloesser (NED) by 6-0 in the final, winning her five elimination matches by 6-0, 6-5 over Samantha Ensign, 6-0, 6-2 and 6-0. Mexico’s Aida Roman won the bronze, 6-4, over Jennifer Mucino-Fernandez.

World no. 15 Jack Williams, the second-ranked American, won the men’s Recurve title with a 6-0 shutout of Gabe Anderson in the final, while Alex Gilliam took the bronze, 6-5, over Christian Stoddard.

● Badminton ● China swept to four wins in five events at the Indonesia Open in Jakarta, starting with an all-Chinese final in the Mixed Doubles and Zhen Bang Jiang and Ya Xin Wei sweeping Si Wei Zheng and Ya Qiong Huang (CHN), 21-11, 21-14.

Next came the only loss of the finals, as Koreans Ha Na Baek and So Hee Lee – second-seeded – defeated Qing Chen Chen and Yi Fan Jia (CHN), 21-17, 21-13. But Chinese stars won the last three events.

Worlds bronze medalist Yu Fei Chen (CHN) won a grueling battle with World Champion Se Young An (KOR), 21-14, 14-21, 21-18, then 2018 Worlds silver winner Yu Qi Shi (CHN) won over Worlds bronze medalist Anders Antonsen (DEN) in the men’s Singles final, 21-9, 12-21, 21-14.

The men’s Doubles finale saw second-seeds Wei Keng Liang and Chang Wang (CHN) take down Wei Chong Man and Kai Wun Tee (MAS), 19-21, 21-16, 21-12.

● Basketball ● The U.S. men entered the FIBA men’s U-18 AmeriCup in Buenos Aires (ARG) as the six-time defending champions and having won 10 of the 12 tournaments contested all-time.

They had to face home favorite Argentina in the final, but it was no contest, as the Americans pulled away in the second quarter and won in a 110-70 rout.

The U.S. led, 24-23 at the quarter mark, then went on a 28-13 second-quarter run for a 52-36 lead at the half. After a 37-14 third quarter, the lead was 89-50, on the way to the 11th U.S. win in 13 editions of this tournament and seventh in a row.

The U.S. shot 52.4% from the field, led by point guard Darius Acuff Jr. with 26 points, guard Jasper Johnson with 19 and forward Nikolas Khamenia and center Daniel Jacobsen with 11 each. Argentina was held to 35.6% shooting; forward Tyler Kropp – a power forward from Powell, Ohio – led with 20 points.

Canada won the bronze, 89-67, for its eighth straight medal in this tournament and second consecutive third-place finish.

● Beach Volleyball ● The fifth of seven Beach Pro Tour Elite 16 tournament was held in Ostrava (CZE), with the 2023 World Champions – Americans Kelly Cheng and Sara Hughes – getting their first win of the season.

Seeded fifth, they swept top-ranked Ana Patricia Ramos and Duda Lisboa (BRA) in the semis and then out-fought 2019 World Champions Melissa Humana-Paredes and Brandie Wilkerson (CAN) in the final by 21-13, 21-23, 15-12 in the final. Latvia’s Tina Graudina and Anastasija Samoilova (LAT) swept aside Ramos and Lisboa in the third-place match, 21-18, 21-19.

The red-hot Swedes, top-ranked David Ahman and Jonaton Hellvig (SWE) won their second Elite 16 of the season in their third final, 21-19, 21-18 over Stefan Boermans and Yorick de Groot (NED). Americans Miles Partain and Andrew Benesh got an impressive bronze medal with a win over Olympic champs Anders Mol and Christian Sorum (NOR) by 21-15, 21-14.

● Canoe-Kayak ● The famous Australian Fox sisters were all over the Slalom World Cup II in Prague (CZE), but had to settle for three silver medals.

First was Olympic C-1 champ Jessica Fox, with 48 career World Cup wins, who won silver medals in both the C-1 and K-1. Emma Vuitton (FRA) took the K-1 at 94.12 seconds (0 penalties), with Fox faster, but suffering four penalties to finish at 94.29 and Germany’s Tokyo K-1 winner Ricarda Funk at 94.40 (4).

Czech Gabriela Satkova thrilled the home fans with a win in the C-1 final over Fox, 96.35 (2) to 97.94 (4); American Evy Leibfarth was ninth at 162.37, having missed a gate (50). The two silvers for Fox give her a fabulous career total of 77 World Cup medals.

In the Kayak Cross, younger sister Noemie Fox also won silver, second to Angela Hug of France.

European men’s K-1 champion Giovanni de Gennaro (ITA) won the men’s race in 79.07 (0) over Mateusz Polaczyk (POL) 81.28 (0) and Jakub Krejci (CZE) 81.35 (0). In the C-1 final, Czech Jiri Prskavec, the Tokyo Olympic K-1 gold medalist, got his first career World Cup win in C-1 at 86.32 (0), beating 2023 World Champion Benjamin Savsek (SLO: 87.14/0) and 2023 Worlds runner-up Nicolas Gestin (FRA: 88.43/2).

Spain’s Manuel Ochoa won the Kayak cross final ahead of Tillmann Roeller (GER).

● Cycling ● After the massive crash that nullified stage 5 of the 76th Criterium du Dauphine in France, 2022 champion Primoz Roglic (SLO) got serious and rode away with two straight stage wins and won an eight-second victory over American Matteo Jorgenson.

Stage six had a late climb and an uphill finish at the end of 174.1 km and Roglic won by three seconds over Guilio Ciccone (ITA) and took the race lead by 19 seconds over Remco Evenepoel (BEL), also impacted by the crash. On Saturday, the 155.3 km route to Samoens 1600 had two more major climbs and another uphill finish, with Roglic winning at the line over Jorgenson in 4:29:16 as Evenepoel fell back in 13th. So, Roglic had a 1:02 lead going into Sunday’s 160.6 km eighth stage, more of a hilly course but with another uphill finish.

This time, it was Carlos Rodriguez (ESP) out-sprinting Jorgenson to the line in 4:18:02, with Roglic back in sixth, 48 seconds off the pace. That closed things up, but Roglic maintained an eight-second lead at the end, with Jorgenson next and Derek Gee (CAN: +0.36) third, and Evenepoel in seventh.

Belgium’s Lotte Kopecky won the first two stages of the 9th Women’s Tour of Britain and sailed to a 17-second win over Anna Henderson (GBR).

Kopecky won a mass sprint to take the opening stage on Thursday, then out-dueled Henderson to the line to win the 140.1 km second stage and maintain her lead. She was 17th in the mass-sprint finish of the flat third stage, won by Lorena Wiebes (NED), and continued her 17-second advantage on Henderson.

In Sunday’s hilly finale in and around Manchester, a group of 13 pushed for the finish and Ruby Roseman-Gannon (AUS) won the stage in 2:37:51 over 99.2 km, with Kopecky fourth and Henderson 10th, all in the same time. That left the final standings with Kopecky up 17 seconds on Henderson and Christine Majerus (LUX) in third.

At the third Downhill leg of the UCI Mountain Bike World Cup series in Leogang (AUT), five-time World Champion Loic Bruni (FRA) won for the second time in 3:05.523, a couple of seconds ahead of Canada’s Finn Iles, the 2016 World Junior Champion (3:07.917).

Austria’s Valentina Hoell, the 2022 and 2023 World Champion, also won for the second time this season, timing 3:40.141 to 3:47.243 for American Anna Newkirk, who won her first medal this season.

● Football ● The U.S. men entered Saturday’s friendly against Colombia in Landover, Maryland with an all-time record of 3-13-5 against the South Americans and had not won against Colombia since 2005.

After a 5-1 loss, the gap between the teams seemed even larger. Colombian forward Jhon Arias scored in the sixth minute off a pass that was deflected off a U.S. defender and after a positioning touch, beat U.S. keeper Matt Turner from about six yards out.

Striker Rafael Borre got a second goal for Colombia in the 19th on a bicycle kick from inside the box, following a failed U.S. clearance. That was the halftime score, with Colombia leading on shots, 8-6. Christian Pulisic hit the post for the U.S. with a header in the 32nd.

And the U.S. got back into it in the 58th as forward Tim Weah with a right-footed shot from the right side of the box, across to the left corner.

But the visitors turned up the pressure after a series of substitutes, with the U.S. getting punished for repeatedly losing the ball on its half of the field. Sub midfielder Richard Rios scored in the 77th, then sub forward Jorge Carrascal in the 85th and sub forward Luis Sinisterra in the 88th to make the game a runaway. Colombia ended with a 15-10 shots edge, but the U.S. had more possession at 53%.

Colombia extended in unbeaten streak to 22 games. It doesn’t get easier for the U.S., with Brazil next on Wednesday in Orlando, Florida at 7 p.m. Eastern time.

● Gymnastics ● Brazil was the big winner at the Pan American Rhythmic Championships in Guatemala City (GUA), starting with Barbara Sundays taking the All-Around at 130.150 points, just ahead of American Rin Keys (130.000) and Maria Alexandre (BRA: 129.550). Megan Chu of the U.S. was fifth (123.300).

Sundays also won on Hoop (34.300), leading a 1-2 with teammate Geovanna Santos (33.100), ahead of Chu (32.950) and Keys (32.850).

Alexandre won the Ball final, scoring 34.550 over Keys (33.400) and Chu (33.000), and on Ribbon at 33.150, with Sundays second (32.400) and keys and Chu in fourth and fifth. Keys won on Clubs (33.700) over Sundays (33.100) and Alexandre (31.300), with Alexandria Kautzman of the U.S. in fourth (29.400).

● Shooting ● In the final events of the ISSF World Cup in Munich (GER), Britain’s 2018 World 50 m Rifle/Prone gold medalist, Seonaid McIntosh won the women’s 50 m Rifle/3 Positions title in a runaway, scoring 466.7 in the final to 462.6 for China’s Jiayu Han, the 2023 10 m Air Rifle champion.

Norway’s Ole Halvorsen won the men’s 50 m Rifle/3 Positions gold at 464.3, ahead of Istvan Peni (HUN: 464.1), holding a 0.6-point lead with two shots remaining, but seeing the margin go down to 0.2.

You can receive our exclusive TSX Report by e-mail by clicking here. You can also refer a friend by clicking here, and can donate here to keep this site going.

For our updated, 547-event International Sports Calendar for the rest of 2024 and beyond, by date and by sport, click here!