Wednesday was the winter solstice, and winter sports were fittingly the bulk of this week’s Medal Stand column. Snowboarding (including an update on Rigby’s Jessika Jenson), bobsled, luge and skeleton all were addressed.
I am currently working on wrapping up the last two fall all-area teams as well as my contributions to the “Best of 2016 in sports” article, so I’m not sure if there will be a column next week or not. That will likely be a decision I make early next week depending on the progress of my other assignments.
The Medal Stand: Jenson 15th at Copper Mountain
The U.S. was well represented at last weekend’s Grand Prix stop at Copper Mountain, Colo.
Among the numerous Olympians to make the trip was Rigby snowboarder Jessika Jenson, who competed in women’s big air last Thursday. Although she did not advance to last Saturday’s finals, Jenson ended up placing 15th overall with 59.25 points. U.S. teammates Jamie Anderson and Julia Marino were among those to advance to the finals. Anderson, the 2014 women’s slopestyle snowboard Olympic champion, won with 151.25 points while Marino placed fourth with 136.75. Women’s big air drew 30 competitors from 13 nations.
Also making the podium at Copper were 16 year-old Chloe Kim in women’s halfpipe (first place), Chase Josey in men’s halfpipe (third place) and Ryan Stassel in men’s big air (third place). Kim’s World Cup win was her sixth straight.
Through last weekend, Jenson is 15th in the FIS women’s snowboarding overall standings and in the FIS women’s big air standings with 490 World Cup points.
Coming up locally
Today is the second ‘Kelly Canyon Cares’ day at Kelly Canyon Resort. Bringing a canned food item will result in a $5 discount on a lift ticket. Canned food donations will be sent to Community Food Basket – Idaho Falls.
Team USA Updates
The two-man bobsled team of Steven Holcomb and Sam McGuffie won the World Cup stop at Lake Placid last Friday in a combined time of one minute, 49.47 seconds. The same day, the U.S. went 1-2 in women’s bobsled at the same track. Jamie Greubel Poser and Aja Evans took first in a total time of 1:52.02 and the team of Elana Meyers Taylor and Lolo Jones were second in 1:52.16.
On Saturday, Holcomb and McGuffie teamed up with Carlo Valdes and Jimmy Reed to claim silver in four-man in a combined time of 1:48.31. It was Holcomb’s first four-man bobsled medal since the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Luge athletes Erin Hamlin and Emily Sweeney followed up their bobsled teammates’ 1-2 finish from Friday with two 1-2 finishes on Saturday at Utah Olympic Park in Park City. Hamlin was first in a combined time of 1:29.257 in women’s singles and Sweeney was second in 1:29.384. An hour and a half later, Hamlin took first in the women’s sprint race in 32.811 seconds and Sweeney was second in 33.034. Both events were the first women’s luge events to be broadcast live on NBC outside of the Winter Olympics, per teamusa.org.
The International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation announced Monday that the 2017 bobsled and skeleton world championships will be relocated from Sochi to Koenigsee, Germany, following the release of the McLaren report revealing widespread state-sponsored doping in Russia.
Gamesbids.com reported on Tuesday that the International Olympic Committee evaluation commission will visit the three 2024 Summer Olympics bid cities in the spring. Los Angeles will be visited from April 23-25, Budapest from May 10-12 and Paris from May 14-16.
Runner’s World and other publications shared Wednesday that Galen Rupp, Shalane Flanagan, Meb Keflezighi, Desiree Linden, Jared Ward and Abdi Abdirahman will run in the 2017 Boston Marathon. Rupp and Ward will make their Boston Marathon debut while Keflezighi will be competing in the revered race for the final time.