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≡ THE 5-RING CIRCUS ≡
1. Contract signed to build Cortina sliding track
2. RUSADA to ask for Valieva decision to stay confidential
3. Marathon Trials a success, but why did NBC silence Goucher?
4. New Zealand case authorizes athlete collective bargaining
5. Doping-encouraged event gets billionaire backing
● Against the advice of the International Olympic Committee, the Italian government confirmed the nearly-$88 million contract to build a sliding track in Cortina d’Ampezzo for the 2026 Olympic Winter Games. The national finance minister suggested putting up a countdown clock to remind everyone of the tight timeline.
● The Russian Anti-Doping Agency announced that it may not allow publication of the actual decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport panel in the Kamila Valieva doping case. That’s their right under the Court of Arbitration rules; however, an appeal may also be made to the Swiss Federal Tribunal.
● The U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials were a success in Orlando on Saturday, with the area expecting a $12-15 million tourism boost. The races were dramatic, but NBC’s sound engineers did no favors for analyst Kara Goucher, whose voice was drowned out again and again by inflated crowd noise. What’s that about? Men’s third-placer Leonard Korir looks good for eventual Paris qualification, but that won’t be settled until May.
● In New Zealand, an athlete collective of cyclists and rowers formed a “union” under national law and demanded collective bargaining with High Performance Sport New Zealand for better funding and conditions. An Employment Relations Authority judge agreed that collective bargaining should be allowed, but with no requirement that any agreement be made. The ruling may be appealed.
● The doping-encouraged “Enhanced Games” idea has received some funding, and is still in the planning stages for mid-2025 at a U.S. location. It has been called dangerous, but the founder says it’s simply a way to free up science.
● World Championships: Aquatics (2: China 1-2 in women 10 m diving, and sweeps two in artistic) ●
● Panorama: Alpine Skiing (Italian star Goggia crashes, has surgery) = Archery (Ellison, Kroppen win World Indoor Series in Vegas) = Athletics (world leaders by McRae, Pinnock, Alfred) = Basketball (USA Basketball named women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament team) = Cricket (men’s ICC U-19 World Cup proceeding without more protest as South Africa reaches semis) = Ice Hockey (Hockey Canada suspends entire 2018 men’s World Junior team over assault allegations against five) = Modern Pentathlon (French federation loses €600,000 in bank cyber-assault) = Ski Mountaineering (France’s Harrop sweeps women’s World Cup races) = Speed Skating (Jackson wins ISU World Cup 500 m title) ●
Contract signed to build Cortina sliding track
The Italian governmental agency responsible for the construction related to the 2026 Olympic Winter Games – the Societa Infrastrutture Milano Cortina 2026 SpA – known as SIMICO, confirmed the contract with Para-based construction Impresa Pizzarotti & C. on Friday (3).
Now the race begins to get the track built in Cortina d’Ampezzo, replacing the dismantled Eugenio Monti track built for the 1956 Winter Games. The Italian news agency ANSA reported (computer translation from the original Italian):
“[A]ccording to the contract, Pizzarotti will have 685 days to complete the work, therefore counting Saturdays and Sundays the construction should be completed by early January 2026, practically one month from the opening ceremony of Milan-Cortina. But in terms of construction times for the casing, however, there is another date with a red circle on the calendar: 15 March 2025. By that day the track must be ready for a first test, the one in which bobsleighs and sleds evaluate the dangerousness of the curves to then put any corrections into practice.”
The contract is for €81.6 million, or about $87.8 million U.S., with work to start on 19 February.
The International Olympic Committee has remained opposed to the project, preferring since the bid phase an existing track; its statement noted:
“The timelines set by the International Federations of these sports to homologate and run test events on any new or renovated track have to be respected.
“With this in mind, the IOC has strong concerns about the delivery of this project by the required deadline of March 2025, which is necessary to validate and homologate the track, as no sliding track has ever been completed in such a short timeframe. This concern is shared by the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation and the International Luge Federation.
“Therefore, the IOC has asked the Milano Cortina 2026 Organizing Committee to prepare a plan B as contingency in case of any delays, to ensure bobsleigh, skeleton and luge competitions can be held during the Olympic Winter Games Milano Cortina 2026.
“The new project for the sliding track in Cortina does not address these issues as the planned design does not include any viable sustainable use or legacy following the Games and does not deliver a venue that meets all technical requirements, increasing significantly cost and complexity for the organizing committee that will have to make up for the gaps.”
The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation is also worried:
“[T]he IBSF raised its serious concerns on the tight construction timeline given the fact that the homologation of the sliding track has to take place in March 2025. As an international federation, the safety of athletes, officials and spectators has the highest priority, followed by a sustainable legacy plan for the use of the sliding center after the Olympic Winter Games. …
“The IBSF fully supports the IOC´s request to the Milano Cortina 2026 Organizing Committee to prepare a plan B as a contingency in case of any delays. Therefore, it appreciates the decision of the Board of Directors of the Milano Cortina 2026 Foundation Board, to give the CEO of the Milano Cortina 2026 Organizing Committee the mandate to continue the work of negotiating a possible plan B.”
And there is worry in Italy, too, with national Finance Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti joking – he said he was joking – that:
“The Olympics don’t come every two years, they’re coming in 2026 and then they won’t come again, and I’m beginning to regret backing it, because I feel the responsibility.”
He added, more seriously:
“I want to put a nice electronic board at the entrance to Valtellina that indicates how many days are left to realize the sense of urgency needed.
“I read about the bobsled track, little by little things are moving. The date is that it can’t be moved, you have to run more and recover.”
RUSADA to ask for Valieva decision to stay confidential
“RUSADA respects athletes’ rights and in this case we resorted to all possible means to protect confidential information regarding our client.
“We have received the reasoning behind the [Court of Arbitration for Sport] decision and our lawyers are already examining it. It is very likely that we will ask CAS to keep confidential this decision’s reasoning section.”
That statement from the Russian Anti-Doping Agency on Friday signals that the detailed, written decision of the Court of Arbitration for Sport in the Kamila Valieva doping appeal case, decided in favor of the World Anti-Doping Agency, will not be publicly released for some time, if ever.
Following the announcement of the CAS arbitration decision on 29 January, the Court of Arbitration explained the process for release of the written opinion:
“The Arbitral Award issued by the CAS Panel is currently subject to a confidentiality review meaning that the parties might request that the Arbitral Award, or certain information contained in it, remain confidential.
“For this reason, the Arbitral Award was not immediately published on the CAS website.
“The review will take a few days to complete but it is possible that the award, either redacted or in its entirety, might be published by the end of next week.”
One issue in the release of the decision is that Valieva was 15 at the time of the doping incident, on 21 December 2021, and is still a minor, aged 17. The World Anti-Doping Code has protections for minors as to the release of information about doping incidents, but no restrictions on possible penalties, as Valieva was given a four-year ban for the use of Trimetazidine, which showed up in her December 2021 test.
Further, the Court of Arbitration for Sport is not a formal court in the governmental sense, but an arbitration program between the involved parties, all of which can ask for some or all of a decision not to be released. That appears to be the situation now, but the decision could be released at a later time if the objecting party relents.
And there is a possible appeal. French attorney Andrea Pinna said in a statement:
“I confirm that my law firm is representing Kamila Valieva. We are not commenting at this time; the athlete’s legal team is reviewing the decision, which is over 130 pages long, before commenting and deciding on further action, which may indeed include challenging its validity in the Swiss Federal Court.”
Marathon Trials a success, but why did NBC silence Goucher?
The coverage was all about the race and that’s the way it should be for a signature event like Saturday’s U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials in Orlando, Florida.
The skies were sunny, the weather was temperate enough not to be an overriding factor and the loop course – a short, 2.2-mile opener and then three loops of eight miles each – made it possible for athletes to gauge the race and for the crowds around the finish to cheer as the race progressed.
There weren’t many spectators outside of the finishing straight on Rosalind Avenue, and the aerial shots of the race on NBC leads to an educated guess of perhaps 25,000 spectators out to see the Trials on Saturday morning.
Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer predicted a $12-15 million economic impact from not only the runners, but families, fans, news media and officials coming into town for the race, served by 1,500 race volunteers.
This was a success for the Greater Orlando Sports Commission and the Track Shack race directors, and after the tug-of-war on the starting time was settled, for USA Track & Field and the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee for its lack of drama away from the race itself.
For those watching NBC’s race coverage and wanting more, the second-screen Trials online leaderboard and race statistics presentation was superb: mile-by-mile splits, constant updates and clear, easy-to-read graphics. The only thing missing was a live blog – World Athletics has perfected this – for added comments such as drop-outs during the race, or updated weather. Maybe next time.
The television planning was excellent and there were all of the expected aerial shots – especially on Rosalind Avenue – and the on-course cameras and audio worked most of the time.
There was one major glitch, which seems to have spread like a virus on live sports coverage across all networks. Drowning out the announcers with potted-up crowd noise.
Except for the finish area, there wasn’t that much noise from fans on most of the eight-mile loop. And while play-by-play host Leigh Diffey (AUS) could be heard clearly, analyst – and 2007 Worlds 10,000 m silver medalist – Kara Goucher could not.
Goucher has a soft voice and was consistently muffled by amped-up crowd noise to the point where many of her comments were unintelligible. Maybe they were interesting, maybe they weren’t important, but who could tell? If Goucher’s comments couldn’t be heard, why was she on the broadcast to begin with?
Why can’t NBC give her more respect?
And the same thing happened on Sunday at the New Balance Grand Prix indoor meet, especially with Lewis Johnson trying to do interviews against the very loud public address system at The Track at New Balance. But in one interview, the sound engineer was on it and potted down the background noise to allow Johnson to get a few words out of Ethiopian star Gudaf Tsegay after the women’s 1,500 m. It is possible.
The races were great, and there was good coverage where possible of some of the drop-outs, with Diffey also adding information as he got it. Marathon debutante Paul Chelimo, the twice Olympic medalist at 5,000 m, did not finish; neither did Scott Fauble, expected to contend for the Olympic team, or Abdi Abdirahman, the five-time Olympian and oldest in the field at 47.
On the women’s side, debutante Jenny Simpson did not finish. Neither did defending champ Aliphine Tuliamuk, and contenders Keira D’Amato and Betsy Saina. Des Linden, 40, running in her fifth Olympic Trials, finished 11th, after 13th in 2008, then second, second and fourth in 2012-16-20. Sara Hall, also 40, was competing in her eighth Olympic Trials – her third marathon to go with five track Trials – finished a very creditable fifth.
One of the remaining mysteries following the Trials was what will happen to third–placer Leonard Korir, 37, who moved up from fourth in 2020, but is not yet confirmed for Paris. His 2:09:57 time helped his cause and ranks about 68th on the World Athletics Olympic protocol list for Paris qualification, with 80 runners (but not more than three per country) to be finally confirmed in early May.
New Zealand case authorizes athlete collective bargaining
An interesting administrative labor ruling in New Zealand has held that an athlete “union” as defined under New Zealand law, has the right to ask for collective bargaining talks with High Performance Sport New Zealand (HPSNZ).
An action was brought in 2022 by an athlete group of New Zealand cyclists and rowers, calling themselves The Athletes Cooperative, Inc. (TAC) and asking for collective bargaining with High Performance Sport NZ, which leads the country’s elite-performance programs for international competition.
HPSNZ refused to enter into collective bargaining with The Athletes Cooperative, noting that such efforts were done with unions on behalf of employees, and the athletes were individual contractors and not employees. The matter was escalated to the Employment Relations Authority, which heard the matter over the past year, with an opinion issued by Authority member Rowan Anderson on 26 January 2024.
It’s important to note that the decision was made strictly based on New Zealand law, and may well be appealed by HPSNZ. Anderson’s review of the situation and application of the Employment Relations Act 2000 showed an expansive view of the law and a willingness to stretch a bit beyond its written outlines.
Essentially, The Athletes Cooperative insisted that as a group of individuals which are involved with the HPSNZ for funding and support, it has the right to come together and under New Zealand law, can ask for collective bargaining, even though none of them are HPSNZ employees. HPSNZ said no.
Anderson noted very specifically that there is a wide chasm between the initiation of collective bargaining talks and an agreement that could be offered to union members for ratification. In fact, he pointed out that even if the “union members” do not want to have the union engage in collective bargaining, the union itself can still enter talks, and anything they come up with can be refuted later in an attempt at ratification.
He also saw no problem with a “union” which had no employees going ahead with talks with a prospective employer. However, he also explained that simply starting collective bargaining talks does not mean there would be any agreement:
“Section 33(1) of the Act, for example, requires the parties to conclude a collective agreement unless there is a genuine reason, based on reasonable grounds, not to. Here, there may well objectively be a genuine reason, based on reasonable grounds, why the parties might not conclude a collective agreement. However, that does not in my view suggest that bargaining cannot be commenced. …
“Here, the issue is squarely in relation to employment rather than independent contracting. TAC is seeking to bargain for a collective agreement. Such bargaining clearly applies to employment, as opposed independent contracting arrangements. That does not in my view preclude a union seeking to initiate bargaining in relation to a collective agreement that, if concluded, would set terms and conditions of employment for potential future employees.”
Anderson’s liberal view of the law is likely to be challenged by HPSNZ, and is grounded specifically in New Zealand law. But the case is a fascinating milestone for those who think that collective bargaining by athletes will somehow settle questions such as where the money for athlete demands is supposed to come from.
Doping-encouraged event gets billionaire backing
The “Enhanced Games” is a doping-friendly concept in which amped-up athletes on whatever drugs they can get compete to break world records in events people are supposed to care about.
Australian attorney Aron D’Souza led the fight by German-born PayPal founder Peter Thiel against Gawker Media in the Hulk Hogan defamation matter, and D’Souza confirmed last week that Thiel and other investors are supporting his “Enhanced Games” concept slated to debut in mid-2025.
In an interview with the European-business-focused Sifted Magazine, D’Souza explained:
“‘The Olympic Games are this ancient model reinvented by a colonialist aristocrat in 1896 for the Victorian world,’ he tells Sifted. ‘We need to design a Games for social media and broadcast television.”
“That means dispensing with the events people ‘aren’t interested in,’ like badminton, curling and long distance running. Team sports, which require more competitors and more ‘complex’ logistics, are also out.
“Instead, the Enhanced Games will focus on a limited number of single-person events in the areas of track and field, swimming, gymnastics, combat and weightlifting.
“‘Our core focus is breaking world records,’ says D’Souza. ‘We only want athletes who have the potential to break world records in sports that actually matter. And so by having a much narrower set [of events], we can deliver much more cost effectively.’”
The event would be held annually in the U.S., with qualifying events in Australia, Britain and India.
Crazy? Dangerous? Probably, but it appears D’Souza may get enough money to be able to try out his vision at least once.
It’s another headache-in-the-making for the Olympic Movement.
≡ WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS ≡
● Aquatics ● At the World Aquatics Championships in Doha (QAT), Chinese power was on display in the women’s 10 m Platform final with a 1-2 finish as Hongchan Quan and Yuxi Chen both finished more than 50 points ahead of the bronze medalist.
Quan came in as the Tokyo 2020 gold medalist and had won 2022 and 2023 Worlds golds in the 10 m Synchro event. This time, she moved up from individual silvers in 2022 and 2023 and won by improving in each round, finishing at 436.25 to win in the final.
Three-time defending champ Chen, the Tokyo silver winner and 2022-23 Worlds winner, led the prelims (435.20) and semis (421.85) and managed 427.80 points in the final, but had to settle for her first Worlds silver after five golds across the last three Worlds.
Third was Britain’s Andrea Spendolini-Sirieix at 377.10. Katrina Young was the top American, in 20th, and did not advance to the semifinals.
In Artistic Swimming, China won the women’s Duet Technical with 266.084 points to 259.5601 for Great Britain and 258.0333 for Spain, and China’s Shuncheng Yang took the men’s Solo Technical at 246.4766 over veteran duets star Giorgio Minisini (ITA: 245.3166) and Colombian Gustavo Sanchez (231.0000). American Kenneth Gaudet was seventh (215.4333).
≡ PANORAMA ≡
● Alpine Skiing ● Another major star crashes out, as Italy’s Sofia Goggia, the 2018 Olympic Downhill gold medalist, broke two bones in her right leg Monday during a Giant Slalom training run in Ponte di Legno, Italy and was taken to a Milan hospital for immediate surgery.
Goggia had won two FIS World Cup races this season and was leading the Downhill discipline, but is now out for the rest of the season. She had a metal rod attached with seven screws to begin repairing her tibia and malleolus bones. “I’ll come back this time, too,” she said before the operation.
This is only the latest crash for Goggia, who has suffered significant injuries to both legs, knees and a hand and arm since 2010, but has come back each time.
This latest injury follows a series of crashes by skiing stars this season, including American star Mikaela Shiffrin, Aleksander Aamodt Kilde (NOR), Petra Vlhova (SVK), Alexis Pinturault (FRA) and Swiss Corinne Suter and Wendy Holdener.
● Archery ● Americans made the finals in the Recurve section of the Indoor World Series Final at the Vegas Shoot on Saturday, but Brady Ellison was the one to strike gold. The three-time Olympic medalist defeated Brazil’s 2021 Worlds runner-up, Marcus D’Almeida, 6-2 in the final.
Tokyo Team bronze winner Michelle Kroppen (GER) took the women’s final with a 6-4 win against American Casey Kaufhold, the 2021 Worlds silver winner. The winners received prize money of CHF 5,000, with CHF 2,500 for second.
● Athletics ● A world-leading mark in the men’s 400 m from Alabama senior Khaleb McRae, at 45.02 at the high altitude of Albuquerque, New Mexico on Saturday. It’s a lifetime best, indoor or out, for the SEC sixth-placer in 2023.
Wayne Pinnock (JAM), the 2023 Worlds silver medalist, claimed the men’s long jump world lead jumping for Arkansas, at 8.34 m (27-4 1/2).
Also at the New Mexico Classic were world-leading sprints for St. Lucia’s Julien Alfred at 7.04 for 60 m (equals world lead) and 22.16 for the 200 m.
● Basketball ● USA Basketball announced its Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament roster for the 8-11 February tournament in Belgium, including seven prior Olympians:
● Ariel Atkins (2020)
● Napheesa Collier (2020)
● Jewell Loyd (2020)
● Kelsey Plum (2020-3×3)
● Breanna Stewart (2016-20)
● Diana Taurasi (2004-08-12-16-20)
● Jackie Young (2020-3×3)
In addition, Kahleah Copper, Sabrina Ionescu and Alyssa Thomas from the gold-medalist 2022 FIBA Women’s World Cup squad are on the team. Among those not chosen was Brittney Griner, a two-time Olympic gold medalist in 2016 and 2020.
The Olympic Team roster for Paris, however, has yet to be finalized.
● Cricket ● Protests against the South African team and former captain David Teeger for his pro-Israel comments last October have cooled at the ICC men’s U-19 World Cup being played in South Africa.
Teeger and his RSA team won two of their three group games and moved on to the second “Super 6″ round, defeating Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka to make it to the semis. The only notable protest was in their opener. They will face undefeated India (5-0) in the first semi on Tuesday while Australia (4-0) and Pakistan (5-0) will play Thursday, with the final on Sunday.
Cricket (T20) will be included in the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.
● Ice Hockey ● A major scandal over sexual assault charges has erupted in Canada, with all 22 members of the Canadian team at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championships suspended by Hockey Canada on Monday:
“Pending the completion of the appeal process, all players from the 2018 National Junior Team remain suspended by Hockey Canada, and are ineligible to play, coach, officiate or volunteer with Hockey Canada-sanctioned programs.”
Five players from that team – Carter Hart, now of the Philadelphia Flyers, Michael McLeod and Cal Foote of the New Jersey Devils, Dillon Dube of the Calgary Flames and former NHL player Alex Formenton – were charged with sexual assault over a 19 June 2018 incident alleged to have taken place in London, Ontario.
According to the CBC:
“The initial police investigation began shortly after the June 2018 complaint and ended without charges in 2019. It was reopened in 2022 by [London Police Chief Thai] Truong‘s predecessor, then Chief Steve Williams, in response to public outrage following a lawsuit that Hockey Canada settled for $3.5 million.”
The four current NHL players are on paid leave from their teams. Truong explained that the re-opening of the case came from a review:
“This review involved re-examining initial investigative steps, gathering additional evidence and obtaining new information. As a result, we have found sufficient steps to charge five adult males with sexual assault.”
Det. Sgt. Katherine Dann added:
“Additional witnesses were spoken to and we collected more evidence. Some of this information was not available when the investigation concluded in 2018. This was one investigation, not two.”
The Hockey Canada statement further explained:
“In November 2023, it was announced that a notice of appeal was filed in response to the final adjudicative report by an independent panel that held a hearing with a view to determine whether certain members of the 2018 National Junior Team breached Hockey Canada’s code of conduct, and if so, what sanctions should be imposed against those players.”
Hockey Canada President Katherine Henderson offered an apology:
“Hockey Canada recognizes that in the past we have been too slow to act and that in order to deliver the meaningful change that Canadians expect of us, we must work diligently and urgently to ensure that we are putting in place the necessary measures to regain their trust, and provide all participants with a safe, welcoming and inclusive environment on and off the ice.”
● Modern Pentathlon ● Bad news for the French Modern Pentathlon federation, which had €600,000 stolen (~$644,571 U.S.) in a hacking attack in December. Said federation head Joel Bouzou, a 1984 Olympic Team bronze medalist:
“It was about the reserves accumulated and which went up in smoke, it is unacceptable. This poses a huge problem for us.”
He told the French all-sport newspaper L’Equipe:
“We hope to recover money following this investigation and that those responsible will be arrested and tried. …
“And we have a problem with this bank, that’s clear. We are in intense discussion with this bank, which is being pushed a little to recognize that it is not well-protected… An investigation is underway. But this will not be resolved in a polite manner.”
Bouzou indicated that the stolen funds were primarily for future development, not for the preparation athletes for Paris 2024:
“We wanted to use this money to purchase obstacles for the new discipline which will replace the riding event in the pentathlon during the future Olympiad. This rather impacts our long-term development since we no longer have these bottom lines.”
● Ski Mountaineering ● French star Emily Harrop had a weekend to remember at the fourth ISMF World Cup of the season, in Villars-sur-Ollon (SUI), taking both the Sprint and the Individual race wins.
Thought of as a Sprint star until a breakthrough Individual Race win in April 2023, Harrop won Friday’s Sprint in 3:21.3, ahead of Marianne Fatton (SUI: 3:09.8) and French teammate Celia Perillat-Pessey (3:26.6). Then Harrop returned on Sunday for her 14th career World Cup gold and third in an Individual Race in 1:25:23.0, beating Italy’s Alba de Silvestro (1:26:19.9) and reigning World Champion Axelle Gachet-Mollaret (FRA: 1:27:31.5).
Switzerland swept the men’s races, with 21-year-old Robin Bussard winning his first World Cup gold in the Sprint (2:31.3) over France’s 2023 Worlds silver winner Thibault Anselmet (2:34.0), and World Champion Remi Bonnet taking the Individual Race in 1:10:11.8, with Anselmet second again, in 1:12:32.8.
● Speed Skating ● With the close of the sixth and final ISU World Cup on Sunday in Quebec City, the seasonal titles were decided, at 500-1,000-1,500-Distances and Mass Start.
The 500 m went to Wataru Morishige (JPN: 483), with four wins in 10 races, over Laurent Debreuil (CAN: 466), with American Jordan Stolz fourth. Zhongyan Ning (CHN: 319) scored points in all seven 1,000 m races to win over Stolz (316 in six races) and in all six races to win the 1,500 m title (292) over Stolz (288 in five races).
The Distance title was a clear win for Davide Ghiotto (ITA: 324) ahead of Ted-Jan Bloemen (CAN: 291), and teammate Andrea Giovannini won the tight Mass Start race, 274-269 vs. Korean Jae-won Chung.
The U.S. won two of three races to take the Team Pursuit title (168 points).
American Olympic champ Erin Jackson scored in all 10 events and won the 500 m crown at 522 points to 514 for Min-sun Kim (KOR). Teammate Kimi Goetz had a career year and finished fourth (382), despite skipping the last event in Quebec.
At 1,000 m, Japanese star Miho Takagi won four races out of seven and was second twice for 348 points, ahead of Americans Goetz (307) and Brittany Bowe (297). Takagi also won the 1,500 m seasonal title at 300, winning the five races she entered; Bowe finished fifth and Goetz was 10th.
Norway’s Ragne Wiklund won three of the six Distance races and won with 300 points, with Czech star Marina Sabilkova second at 260. Canada’s Valerie Maltais won the Mass Start title at 263, just ahead of teammate Ivanie Blondin (257), with American Mia Manganello fourth (248). Japan won the Team Pursuit title (174), with the U.S. fourth.
For our new, 920-event International Sports Calendar for 2024 and beyond, by date and by sport, click here!