|"The rest of the world should be worried." -- Steve Langton|
Three Olympic women’s track and field athletes made the switch to winter sports over the weekend at the U.S. bobsled push championships: Lolo Jones, Hyleas Fountain and Tianna Madison.
They’re going to stick with their summer jobs for now, but had strong showings in their bobsled debuts.
Aja Evans prevailed in the women’s push-athlete competition in 9.65 seconds. Fountain, an Olympic silver medalist in the heptathlon, was fourth (10.01), Madison, who helped lead Team USA to the Olympic gold medal in the 4 x 100 relay in London, tied for fifth (10.04) and two-time Olympic hurdler Jones tied for seventh (10.11).
Evans, a five-time All-American and three-time Big Ten champion in sprinting and throwing at the University of Illinois, had the two fastest times. Katie Eberling was second and Cherrelle Garrett was third.
U.S. coach Todd Hays said he invited Fountain, Madison and Jones to compete so they could "share their Olympics experiences with our athletes and to help boost team morale."
Olympic bronze medalist Elana Meyers' combined time of 9.51 seconds topped the women's pilot event, and Nick Cunningham (8.99) took the men's pilot title.
U.S. bobsled, skeleton and luge athletes start on-ice training Oct. 15 in Lake Placid.
Steve Langton, who finished 10th in the two-man bobsled at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games and claimed both the two-man and four-man world titles last season with driver Steven Holcomb, defended his men’s push title Saturday.
“I’m going into my sixth year in the sport and this is definitely the most competitive field I’ve seen,” Langton said. “The rest of the world should be worried. I know for a fact that we have the best athletes, and all three of our sleds will be extremely competitive this season.”
Langton had the best combined time in the event where athletes were tested from the brake and side push positions won the wheeled push track. His time of 8.83 edged Dallas Robinson by two-hundredths of a second. Vancouver 2012 Olympic four-man champion Curt Tomasevicz was third.
Richard Dornbush earned the silver medal while two-time Olympian Johnny Weir marked his return to figure skating competition by taking fourth at the Finlandia Trophy in Espoo, Finland.
Weir last competed in the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The three-time U.S. champion was sixth at the 2010 Games. Dornbush, the 2011 U.S. silver medalist, landed a quadruple toe loop-double toe but fell on his second quad toe attempt. That was his lone technical mistake of his free skate.
Fellow 2010 Olympian Mirai Nagasu took the women’s bronze while Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue earned the bronze in ice dancing.
Elsewhere, Angela Wang and Hannah Miller captured women’s gold and silver at the Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating event in Zagreb, Croatia, earning spots in the JGP Final.
In addition, Harrison Choate won his first JGP medal when he took a bronze Friday. The sister-brother team of Rachel Parsons and Michael Parsons, who represented Team USA at the inaugural Winter Youth Olympic Games, earned ice dancing bronze, their first international medal.
Max Nowry won a gold medal and Jamel Johnson a bronze in Greco-Roman Friday at the University World Championships in Kuortane, Finland.
“I had been close to winning a medal in the past at the Junior World Championships and I just really had the drive to get something here,” said Nowry, who defeated Dzmitry Brychak of Belarus 6-0, 1-0 in the 55 kg/121-pound final. “I wanted to score on my feet and push the pace.
“I felt really good in the finals and wore the guy down.”
Johnson defeated Romania’s L. Macarei-Storus 4-0, 3-0, in the 60 kg/132-pound bronze medal match.
Jon Anderson was fifth at 74 kg/163 pounds. Mark Stenberg (84 kg/185 pounds) and Toby Erickson (120 kg/264.5 pounds) finished fifth Sunday to help the United States to fifth in the final team standings.
Elsewhere, Max Askren earned an 84-kg/185-pound freestyle silver medal Sunday at the Dmitry Korkin International in Yakutsk, Russia. Les Sigman won a silver medal Sunday at 96 kg/211.5 pounds. Chase Pami (66 kg/145.5 pounds) and Keith Gavin (84 kg/185 pounds) added silver medals.
The United States scored first but fell to Australia, 6-1, Sunday in the title game of the Champions Challenge 1 in Dublin, Ireland. Rachel Dawson, a 2012 Olympian, scored on a penalty corner three minutes into the match.
The United States reached the final with a 2-1 win over Ireland Saturday.
Ireland scored first. Olympian Katie O’Donnell, who was named Player of the Tournament, scored early in the second half to force a tie. Lauren Pfeiffer produced the winner with her fourth goal of the tournament.
Vincent Hancock, a 2012 Olympic gold medalist, and Haley Dunn won skeet titles Sunday at the USA Shooting Fall Selection Match in Kerrville, Texas.
Hancock, a two-time Olympic gold medalist, missed only two targets over three days of competition.
Billy Crawford won the men’s double trap Saturday.
The Fall Selection Match, which determines the 2013 World Cup Shooting Team, continues Friday with men’s and women’s trap.
TRACK AND FIELD: Janet Cherobon-Bawcom, a 2012 Olympian, won the USA 10-Mile Championship Sunday in Minneapolis-St. Paul. Cherobon-Bawcom, who won national titles in the 15 kilometer and 25 kilometer earlier this year, held off 2012 Olympic marathoner Kara Goucher to win in 53:43. Goucher, who hails from nearby Duluth, Minn., holds the course record. Mo Trafeh won the men’s title in 46:56. Trafeh won the 15 kilometer earlier this year and was the national 10-mile, 15-kilometer and half marathon champion in 2011. The race was held in conjunction with the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon.
RACQUETBALL: Woody Clouse defeated Keith Minor 9-5, 9-5, 9-0 to win the UnitedHealthcare U.S. Open Racquetball Championships Classic Professional Racquetball Tour Men’s 40 and Over division for his fourth straight U.S. Open title and fifth overall.
Rocky Carson finished second in the Men’s Professional Finals and Rhonda Rajsich was second in the Women’s Professional Finals in the event in Minneapolis. Carson lost to Canada’s Kane Waselenchuk, who won for the eighth time and fifth straight. Rajsich fell to Mexico’s Paola Longoria, who won for the third time.
EQUESTRIAN: Jimmy Fairclough won his third USEF National Pairs Championship at the Kentucky Classic CDE, which finished Sunday in Lexington. Allison Stroud won the National Combined Driving Pony Team Championship for the eighth time in nine years. Wendy O’Brien won the National Combined Driving Pair Pony Championship and Paul Maye won the National Combined Driving Single Pony Championship.
FENCING: Sabrina Massialas earned a silver medal at the Budapest Cadet European Cup in Hungary.
ROLLER SPORTS: Natalie Motley was second in inline women’s free skating and John Burchfield was third in junior men’s free skating Friday at the World Roller Figure Skating Championships in Auckland, New Zealand. Competition continues through Thursday
SQUASH: The U.S. Open Championships are continuing through Friday in Philadelphia.
Story courtesy Red Line Editorial, Inc. Tom Robinson is a freelance contributor for TeamUSA.org. Material from various news services and press releases from National Governing Bodies was used to compile this report. This story was not subject to the approval of any National Governing Bodies.