The U.S. speedskating team claimed the top two prizes in the final day of World Sprint Championships in Japan Sunday.
Shani Davis and Heather Richardson both earned victories in the 1,000 meters. Davis won with a time of 1:08.96, while Richardson’s gold-medal time was 1:15.28.
"I'm really happy I was able to finish with a really strong 1000m and jump up to third overall,” Richardson said, “and I'm looking forward to getting to Sochi."
Head coach Ryan Shimabukuro said ending the weekend on victories gives the team momentum.
"It was a great motivational boost for the team to close out the weekend with two victories in the 1,000m races, as well as finishing on the overall podium for Heather and Shani. We look forward to building off of this weekend as we begin our final preparations for Sochi.”
BOBSLED TEAM NAMED
The U.S. Bobsled and Skeleton Federation announced the athletes who will compete for the U.S. in the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
"This is the deepest field of push athletes we've ever had," said USBSF CEO Darrin Steele. "We knew heading into the season that the Olympic selection was going to be extremely difficult. It's a good problem to have, but it meant that some outstanding athletes would not make the Olympic team."
Park City’s Steven Holcomb will drive USA 1, while Nick Cunningham will drive USA 2. The team only has two four-man spots but has qualified three two-man sleds. Cory Butner will drive the third two-man sled.
The push athletes include Holcomb’s crew and fellow Utahn Chris Fogt, Alpine, Curt Tomasevicz, who helped Holcomb win gold in 2010, and Steven Langton.
Cunningham’s push athletes are Justin Olsen, Johnny Quinn and Dallas Robinson. The brakemen for the two-man sleds will be determined during the Games.
Jamie Greubel, Elana Meyers and Jazmine Fenlator will drive the three women’s sleds. Greubel is the top-ranked U.S. driver, but she only owns a one-point lead over Meyers. Greubel is the second-ranked driver in the world, while Meyers is third. Fenlator is ranked seventh in the world.
The female push athletes are Aja Evans, Lauryn Williams and Lolo Jones.
SNOWBOARDING TEAM NAMED
The final spots for the U.S. snowboarding team were claimed by two-time gold medalist Shaun White and California’s Greg Bretz.
The other two spots were taken by Danny Davis and Taylor Gold. The women’s halfpipe team is made up of four-time Olympian and 2002 gold medalist Kelly Clark, Kaitlyn Farrington, 2006 gold medalist Hannah Teter and Arielle Gold, Taylor’s sister.
This is the first time slopestyle will be included in the Olympic Games. The men’s slopestyle team is Park City’s Sage Kotsenburg, Chas Guldemond and White, who is one of a handful of athletes trying to qualify in multiple disciplines.
Women’s slopestyle competitors will be Jamie Anderson and Ty Walker.