Reece Whitley Lowers National HS Record in 100 Breaststroke

Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

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Swimming in finals of the 2018 Eastern Interscholastic Swimming and Diving Championships Reece Whitley lowered his own National Private High School record in the 100 breaststroke. The Penn Charter senior touched in 51.16, a half second faster than the 51.68 he recorded in prelims.

That time also surpassed the recently set National Public School record, a 51.62 from Max McHugh.

McHugh’s splits:



Whitley’s prelims splits:



Whitley’s Finals Swim:

 Event 22  Men 100 Yard Breaststroke
         MEET: * 51.16  2/17/2018 Reece P Whitley, Penn Charter
   NAT'L PREP: ! 51.16  2/17/2018 Reece P Whitley, Penn Charter
   F & M Pool: P 51.16  2/17/2018 Reece P Whitley, Penn Charter
   F & M Pool: P 51.68
                 53.39  NAT Nationals
                 55.79  JR LC Jr Champs.
                 56.00  AA All American
    Name           Year School            Prelims     Finals       Points 
                            === A - Final ===                            
  1 Whitley, Reece   SR Penn Charter        51.68      51.16*NAT     32  
                 24.83        51.16 (26.33)

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Texas A&M’s Pickrem & Castillo Top 200 Breast Prelims on Last Day at SECs

Photo Courtesy: Thomas Campbell/Texas A&M Athletics

The final morning of preliminary action at the 2018 SEC swimming and diving championships included qualifying action in the 200 back, 100 free and 200 breast. Florida’s Caeleb Dressel set himself up for another win in the men’s 100 free, while Tennessee’s Erika Brown and Texas A&M’s Sydney Pickrem also look for their third individual wins, and the Texas A&M men look ready to claim their first individual title of the meet.

Kentucky will have significant points coming from the women’s 200 back final as sophomores Asia Seidt and Ali Galyer qualified first and second, respectively, with teammate Bridgette Alexander fifth. Seidt, the defending SEC champion in the event and 100 back champion from Saturday night, touched in 1:50.81, while Galyer was a second back in 1:51.81. Alexander finished in 1:52.07.

The other five qualifiers for the championship final all came from the seventh and final heat of qualifying. Texas A&M’s Lisa Bratton took third in 1:51.86, followed by Georgia’s Kylie Stewart (1:51.94). Finishing sixth through eighth, respectively, were Auburn’s Erin Falconer (1:52.43), Tennessee’s Micah Bohon (1:52.79) and Auburn’s Sonnele Oeztuerk (1:52.83).

Event 34  Women 200 Yard Backstroke
      US Open: O 1:47.84  3/21/2013 Elizabeth Pelton, California
         NCAA: N 1:47.84  3/21/2013 Elizabeth Pelton, California
     American: M 1:47.84  3/21/2013 Elizabeth Pelton, California
     SEC Meet: S 1:48.34  2/21/2009 Gemma Spofforth, Florida
  Pool Record: P 1:49.11  3/21/2009 Gemma Spofforth, UF
                 1:50.99  A
                 1:59.19  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
  1 Asia Seidt       SO Kentucky          1:50.67    1:50.81 qA     
             26.59        54.68 (28.09)
        1:22.86 (28.18)     1:50.81 (27.95)
  2 Ali Galyer       SO Kentucky          1:51.15    1:51.81 qB     
             26.82        55.08 (28.26)
        1:23.41 (28.33)     1:51.81 (28.40)
  3 Lisa Bratton     SR Texas A&M         1:50.10    1:51.86 qB     
             26.77        55.08 (28.31)
        1:23.79 (28.71)     1:51.86 (28.07)
  4 Kylie Stewart    SR Georgia           1:51.88    1:51.94 qB     
             26.74        55.16 (28.42)
        1:23.87 (28.71)     1:51.94 (28.07)
  5 Bridgette Alexa  SR Kentucky          1:51.92    1:52.07 qB     
             26.84        54.85 (28.01)
        1:23.32 (28.47)     1:52.07 (28.75)
  6 Erin Falconer    JR Auburn            1:54.44    1:52.43 qB     
             26.53        54.98 (28.45)
        1:23.91 (28.93)     1:52.43 (28.52)
  7 Micah Bohon      SR Tennessee         1:53.33    1:52.79 qB     
             26.90        55.23 (28.33)
        1:24.03 (28.80)     1:52.79 (28.76)
  8 Sonnele Oeztuer  FR Auburn            1:56.71    1:52.83 qB     
             26.86        55.46 (28.60)
        1:24.27 (28.81)     1:52.83 (28.56)

As with the women’s 200 back, the top seed in the men’s 100 back is a sophomore who claimed the win in the 100 back one night earlier. After posting a come-from-behind victory in that 100-yard event, Javier Acevedo topped prelims here in 1:40.51, with the man he beat out in the 100 back, Alabama’s Christopher Reid, qualifying second in 1:41.09.

Auburn’s Hugo Gonzalez, who became the second-fastest man ever in the 400 IM Friday night, took third in 1:41.43, just ahead of Texas A&M’s Anthony Kim (1:41.49) and Tennessee’s Joey Reilman (1:41.57). Florida’s Brennan Balogh (1:41.99), Missouri’s Nick Alexander (1:42.04) and Georgia’s Jay Litherland (1:42.14) also got into the final.

Event 35  Men 200 Yard Backstroke
      US Open: O 1:35.73  3/26/2016 Ryan Murphy, California
         NCAA: N 1:35.73  3/26/2016 Ryan Murphy, California
     American: M 1:35.73  3/26/2016 Ryan Murphy, California
     SEC Meet: S 1:38.29  2/17/2005 Ryan Lochte, Florida
  Pool Record: P 1:37.58  3/28/2009 Tyler Clary, MICH
                 1:39.66  A
                 1:46.39  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
  1 Javier Acevedo   SO Georgia           1:44.03    1:40.51 qB     
             23.90        49.14 (25.24)
        1:14.98 (25.84)     1:40.51 (25.53)
  2 Christopher Rei  SR Alabama           1:41.74    1:41.09 qB     
             23.96        49.59 (25.63)
        1:15.28 (25.69)     1:41.09 (25.81)
  3 Hugo Gonzalez    FR Auburn            1:39.05    1:41.43 qB     
             23.88        49.71 (25.83)
        1:15.83 (26.12)     1:41.43 (25.60)
  4 Anthony Kim      SO Texas A&M         1:43.42    1:41.49 qB     
             23.60        48.78 (25.18)
        1:15.15 (26.37)     1:41.49 (26.34)
  5 Joey Reilman     JR Tennessee         1:43.42    1:41.57 qB     
             23.93        49.63 (25.70)
        1:15.66 (26.03)     1:41.57 (25.91)
  6 Brennan Balogh   JR Florida           1:46.41    1:41.99 qB     
             23.84        49.73 (25.89)
        1:15.82 (26.09)     1:41.99 (26.17)
  7 Nick Alexander   SO Missouri          1:41.97    1:42.04 qB     
             24.14        50.10 (25.96)
        1:16.14 (26.04)     1:42.04 (25.90)
  8 Jay Litherland   SR Georgia           1:43.10    1:42.14 qB     
             24.00        49.71 (25.71)
        1:15.53 (25.82)     1:42.14 (26.61)

Brown already has two wins in the bag at the SEC championships, in the 50 free and 100 fly, and after only one relay swim on Saturday, she returned to the pool Sunday morning to post the top time in the women’s 100 free. She checked in at 47.36, more than seven tenths ahead of the rest of the field.

Georgia’s Veronica Burchill qualified second in 48.00, and Auburn’s Aly Tetzloff took third in 48.09. Just behind was Texas A&M’s Kristen Malone in 48.13.

Other finalists included Missouri’s Annie Ochitwa (48.22), Texas A&M’s Claire Rasmus (48.49), Auburn’s Julie Meynen (48.55) and Alabama’s Bailey Scott (48.79).

Event 36  Women 100 Yard Freestyle
      US Open: O 45.56  3/18/2017 Simone Manuel, Stanford
         NCAA: N 45.56  3/18/2017 Simone Manuel, Stanford
     American: M 45.56  3/18/2017 Simone Manuel, Stanford
     SEC Meet: S 46.61  2/18/2012 Ariana Vanderpool-Wallace, Auburn
  Pool Record: P 46.62  11/20/2014Simone Manuel, STAN
                 47.53  A
                 49.99  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
  1 Erika Brown      SO Tennessee           47.54      47.36 qA     
    r:+0.68  10.94        22.83 (11.89)
          35.14 (12.31)       47.36 (12.22)
  2 Veronica Burchi  SO Georgia             47.83      48.00 qB     
    r:+0.72  11.11        23.19 (12.08)
          35.68 (12.49)       48.00 (12.32)
  3 Alyssa Tetzloff  JR Auburn              48.01      48.09 qB     
    r:+0.68  10.66        22.79 (12.13)
          35.64 (12.85)       48.09 (12.45)
  4 Kristin Malone   SR Texas A&M           48.61      48.13 qB     
    r:+0.73  11.04        23.08 (12.04)
          35.61 (12.53)       48.13 (12.52)
  5 Ann Ochitwa      JR Missouri            47.58      48.22 qB     
    r:+0.74  11.01        23.02 (12.01)
          35.63 (12.61)       48.22 (12.59)
  6 Claire Rasmus    JR Texas A&M           48.41      48.49 qB     
    r:+0.71  11.41        23.71 (12.30)
          36.22 (12.51)       48.49 (12.27)
  7 Julie Meynen     SO Auburn              47.61      48.55 qB     
    r:+0.66  11.13        23.42 (12.29)
          36.02 (12.60)       48.55 (12.53)
  8 Bailey Scott     SR Alabama             48.95      48.79 qB     
    r:+0.73  11.04        23.33 (12.29)
          36.09 (12.76)       48.79 (12.70)

After deviating from his normal program to swim the 200 IM and 100 breast earlier in the meet, Dressel returned to his bread-and-butter event for the last day of the meet. He qualified first in the men’s 100 free in 41.50 after going out in a leisurely 20.32 and coming back in 21.18.

Finishing almost seven tenths back was Auburn’s Peter Holoda. After splitting 40.80 anchoring the Tigers’ 400 medley relay Saturday night, Holoda swam a time of 42.17 in prelims, just ahead of teammate Zach Apple (42.40).

It took a sub-43-second swim to make the A-final, with Alabama’s Robert Howard (42.67), Tennessee’s Kyle Decoursey (42.72), Missouri’s Mikel Schreuder (42.83), Florida’s Kader Baqlah (42.86) and Florida’s Maxime Rooney (42.94) all getting in.s

Event 37  Men 100 Yard Freestyle
      US Open: O 40.00  3/25/2017 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
         NCAA: N 40.00  3/25/2017 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
     American: M 40.00  3/25/2017 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
     SEC Meet: S 41.07  2/20/2016 Caeleb Dressel, Florida
  Pool Record: P 41.08  3/28/2009 Nathan Adrian, CAL
                 42.11  A
                 44.29  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
  1 Caeleb Dressel   SR Florida             43.36      41.50 qA     
     r:+0.68  9.22        20.32 (11.10)
          30.99 (10.67)       41.50 (10.51)
  2 Peter Holoda     SR Auburn              42.44      42.17 qB     
     r:+0.69  9.70        20.32 (10.62)
          31.28 (10.96)       42.17 (10.89)
  3 Zachary Apple    JR Auburn              42.74      42.40 qB     
     r:+0.70  9.65        20.33 (10.68)
          31.37 (11.04)       42.40 (11.03)
  4 Robert Howard    JR Alabama             41.99      42.64 qB     
     r:+0.71  9.61        20.22 (10.61)
          31.27 (11.05)       42.64 (11.37)
  5 Kyle Decoursey   JR Tennessee           42.30      42.72 qB     
     r:+0.72  9.74        20.43 (10.69)
          31.75 (11.32)       42.72 (10.97)
  6 Mikel Schreuder  JR Missouri            42.86      42.83 qB     
     r:+0.74  9.91        20.64 (10.73)
          31.82 (11.18)       42.83 (11.01)
  7 Khader Baqlah    SO Florida             43.45      42.86 qB     
    r:+0.72  10.17        20.91 (10.74)
          32.01 (11.10)       42.86 (10.85)
  8 Maxime Rooney    SO Florida             43.02      42.94 qB     
     r:+0.67  9.71        20.69 (10.98)
          32.01 (11.32)       42.94 (10.93)

Texas A&M traditionaly excels in the women’s 200 breast, and this day was no different. Five Aggies qualified for the championship final, including the top three seeds. Pickrem, already the winner of both IMs in College Station, qualified first in 2:06.10.

Teammates Esther Gonzalez Medina and Anna Belousova swam on either side of Pickrem in the final heat and qualified second and third, respectively. Gonzalez touched in 2:07.43 and Belousova in 2:07.48. A&M’s Bethany Galat, the World Championships silver medalist in the 200-meter breast, took fifth in 2:08.87, andthe fifth Aggie, Jorie Caneta, was seventh in 2:09.24.

Kentucky’s Bailey Bonnett put up a quick time of 2:07.69 to finish fourth, while South Carolina teammates Kersten Dirrane (2:08.98) and Albury Higgs (2:09.46) were sixth and eighth, respectively.

Event 38  Women 200 Yard Breaststroke
      US Open: O 2:03.18  3/18/2017 Lilly King, Indiana
         NCAA: N 2:03.18  3/18/2017 Lilly King, Indiana
     American: M 2:03.18  3/18/2017 Lilly King, Indiana
     SEC Meet: S 2:04.92  2/22/2014 Breeja Larson, Texas A&M
  Pool Record: P 2:05.17  2/20/2016 Breeja Larson, NYAC
                 2:07.18  A
                 2:15.99  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
  1 Sydney Pickrem   JR Texas A&M         2:05.96    2:06.10 qA     
    r:+0.78  29.12      1:01.16 (32.04)
        1:33.85 (32.69)     2:06.10 (32.25)
  2 Esther Gonzalez  SR Texas A&M         2:08.32    2:07.43 qB     
    r:+0.73  29.75      1:01.92 (32.17)
        1:34.58 (32.66)     2:07.43 (32.85)
  3 Anna Belousova   SO Texas A&M         2:08.97    2:07.48 qB     
    r:+0.72  29.16      1:01.64 (32.48)
        1:34.47 (32.83)     2:07.48 (33.01)
  4 Bailey Bonnett   FR Kentucky          2:07.83    2:07.69 qB     
    r:+0.68  29.11      1:01.68 (32.57)
        1:34.42 (32.74)     2:07.69 (33.27)
  5 Bethany Galat    SR Texas A&M         2:06.52    2:08.87 qB     
    r:+0.68  29.66      1:02.13 (32.47)
        1:35.00 (32.87)     2:08.87 (33.87)
  6 Kersten Dirrane  SR South Carolina    2:12.67    2:08.98 qB     
    r:+0.71  29.53      1:01.98 (32.45)
        1:35.21 (33.23)     2:08.98 (33.77)
  7 Jorie Caneta     SR Texas A&M         2:08.91    2:09.24 qB     
    r:+0.72  28.97      1:01.53 (32.56)
        1:34.87 (33.34)     2:09.24 (34.37)
  8 Albury Higgs     SO South Carolina    2:14.33    2:09.46 qB     
    r:+0.77  29.33      1:02.29 (32.96)
        1:35.35 (33.06)     2:09.46 (34.11)

The Texas A&M men sit in second place in the team standings but have yet to record an individual victory. That could change in the final individual event of the meet as Mauro Castillo Luna posted the top time in the men’s 200 breast prelims at 1:52.84. That time is the fastest in the country this season.

Florida’s Mark Szaranek took second in 1:53.40, and Texas A&M’s Jonathan Tybur was third in 1:53.56. Both of those times also rank among the top five nationally.

Georgia’s James Guest took fourth in 1:54.21, ahead of Texas A&M’s Austin Van Overdam (1:54.45), South Carolina’s Nils WichGlasen (1:54.60), Florida’s Ross Palazzo (1:54.95) and Texas A&M’s Tanner Olson (1:54.98.

Event 39  Men 200 Yard Breaststroke
      US Open: O 1:47.91  3/25/2017 Will Licon, Texas
         NCAA: N 1:47.91  3/25/2017 Will Licon, Texas
     American: M 1:47.91  3/25/2017 Will Licon, Texas
     SEC Meet: S 1:51.58  2/21/2015 Nic Fink, Georgia
  Pool Record: P 1:51.40  3/28/2009 Neil Versfeld, UGA
                 1:52.94  A
                 1:59.79  B
    Name           Year School               Seed    Prelims              
                      === Preliminaries ===                       
  1 Mauro Castillo   SR Texas A&M         1:54.14    1:52.84 qA     
    r:+0.65  26.09        54.81 (28.72)
        1:23.49 (28.68)     1:52.84 (29.35)
  2 Mark Szaranek    SR Florida           1:55.75    1:53.40 qB     
    r:+0.73  25.54        54.08 (28.54)
        1:23.52 (29.44)     1:53.40 (29.88)
  3 Jonathan Tybur   SR Texas A&M         1:54.56    1:53.56 qB     
    r:+0.73  25.81        54.89 (29.08)
        1:24.01 (29.12)     1:53.56 (29.55)
  4 James Guest      JR Georgia           1:53.46    1:54.21 qB     
    r:+0.67  25.74        54.59 (28.85)
        1:24.15 (29.56)     1:54.21 (30.06)
  5 Austin Van Over  JR Texas A&M         1:56.60    1:54.45 qB     
    r:+0.66  25.86        54.63 (28.77)
        1:24.00 (29.37)     1:54.45 (30.45)
  6 Nils Wich-Glase  SR South Carolina    1:54.84    1:54.60 qB     
    r:+0.69  25.42        54.22 (28.80)
        1:24.01 (29.79)     1:54.60 (30.59)
  7 Ross Palazzo     JR Florida           1:59.87    1:54.95 qB     
    r:+0.73  26.05        55.05 (29.00)
        1:24.81 (29.76)     1:54.95 (30.14)
  8 Tanner Olson     FR Texas A&M         1:55.65    1:54.98 qB     
    r:+0.71  26.03        55.11 (29.08)
        1:24.89 (29.78)     1:54.98 (30.09)

Full results

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Michal Kwiatkowski attacks to win Volta ao Algarve stage five and claim overall victory

Geraint Thomas was unable to hold onto his lead, finishing in a group 1-42 down on his team-mate

Michal Kwiatkowski attacked on the final climb of stage five of the Volta ao Algarve to take victory, as well as steal the overall title from Sky team-mate Geraint Thomas.

Kwiatkowski had been part of a large breakaway group that got away early on the mountain stage, and attacked from a reduced bunch with around 2km to go on the final climb.

He beat Ruben Guerreiro (Trek-Segafredo) into second and Serge Pauwels (Dimension Data) into third, with the peloton, containing Geraint Thomas, finally crossing the line at 1-47 down.

The Pole had only been at 19 seconds adrift to Thomas at the start of the day, having won the first summit finish on stage two before Thomas won the time trial on Friday.

But Kwiatkowski was able to show he’s begun the season in fine form, taking another stage win and the overall victory with it.

How it happened

The day began extremely quickly with riders looking for a last shot at victory, with a 31-man break eventually getting away and putting over four minutes into the bunch containing the race leader.

Riders in the break included Kwiatkowski and his Sky team-mate Michal Golas, as well as Guerreiro and Pauwels, along with big names like Tony Martin (Katusha-Alpecin), and Philippe Gilbert and Zdenek Stybar of Quick-Step Floors.

That group gradually whittled down through the tough day of climbing, with five ascents to take on. The break really fell apart with around 50km to go, with Lukas Postlberger (Bora-Hansgrohe) making a break for it alone.

Stybar jumped across with around 28km to go to join Postlberger, with both of them able to keep the chasers at bay by about 30 seconds or so.

As they approached the final climb however, Postlberger was unable to keep the pace and left Stybar up front alone with 11km remaining.

The Czech champion held the chasers of admirably, but the final climb was too much for him and he began to slow.

The reduced break behind was then able to close on him, and with around 2km to go, Kwiatkowski attacked and easily bridged to Stybar, immediately passing him.

Pauwels and Gerreiro made chase, also passing Stybar, but they couldn’t do enough to bring back Kwiatkowski, who cruised home for victory at the top of the climb.

Behind, Geraint Thomas came in among a reduced peloton at 1-47, losing his title to his team-mate and dropping into second overall.


Volta ao Algarve 2018, stage five: Faro – Malhão (173.5km)

1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky, in 4-18-02
2 Ruben Guerreiro (Por) Trek-Segafredo, at 4s
3 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data, at 8s
4 Stefan Kung (Sui) BMC Racing Team at 13s
5 Cesare Benedetti (Ita) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 15s
6 Dion Smith (NZl) Wanty – Groupe Gobert, at 17s
7 Simon Geschke (Ger) Team Sunweb, at 17s
8 Julen Amezqueta (Esp) Caja Rural Seguros RGS, at 23s
9 Ben Swift (GBr) (UAE Team Emirates), at 29s
10 Frederik Backaert (Bel) Wanty – Groupe Gobert, at 35s

Final overall classification

1 Michal Kwiatkowski (Pol) Team Sky, in 18-54-11
2 Geraint Thomas (GBr) Team Sky, at 1-31
3 Tejay van Garderen (USA) BMC Racing Team, at 2-16
4 Bauke Mollema (Ned) Trek-Segafredo, at 2-22
5 Bob Jungels (Lux) Quick-Step Floors, at 2-33
6 Jaime Roson (Esp) Movistar Team, at 2-49
7 Maximillian Schachmann (Ger) Quick-Step Floors, at 2-50
8 Serge Pauwels (Bel) Dimension Data, at st
9 Felix Grosschartner (Pol) Bora-Hansgrohe, at 2-51
10 Nelson Oliveira (Por) Movistar Team, at 2-54

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World number one Federer beats Dimitrov to win Rotterdam title

Roger Federer

Roger Federer marked his impending return to the top of the world rankings by sweeping aside second seed Grigor Dimitrov in the Rotterdam Open final.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion, who will be confirmed as world number one on Monday, beat world number five Dimitrov 6-2-6-2 for his 97th title.

The Bulgarian was broken in the fifth game, then on three more occasions as Federer won comfortably in 55 minutes.

It is the third time Switzerland’s Federer has won the Rotterdam event.

And it takes him to within 12 titles of American Jimmy Connors, who holds the Open-era record of 109.

Federer first became world number one in February 2004, but has not topped the rankings since October 2012 and slipped to a low of 17th in January 2017.

That was after he spent six months out recovering from an operation on a knee problem.

However, he has since won eight titles, including Wimbledon last year and two Australian Opens.

At 36, he eclipses the record held by Serena Williams, who was 35 when she lost her women’s number one ranking in May 2017.

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Tim Wellens secures Ruta del Sol victory as David De La Cruz wins final time trial

Chris Froome finishes outside the top-10 as Wellens rides to the overall win on stage five

Tim Wellens (Lotto-Soudal) did enough to secure overall victory in the Ruta del Sol in the stage five time trial, finishing 14 seconds adrift of stage winner David De La Cruz (Team Sky).

The Belgian began the day as overall leader and had a number of high calibre riders breathing down his neck, with Mikel Landa (Movistar) and Wout Poels (Team Sky) at seven and 11 seconds respectively in second and third place.

But neither, nor those slightly further adrift, were able to produce a performance to unseat Wellens, with Poels beating him by two seconds to move up to second overall and Landa losing a heap of time to drop to 42 seconds and sixth place overall.

De La Cruz, who wasn’t in overall contention, capped off a great week for Team Sky – who had already taken a stage win through Poels – with his impressive time of 17-11 over the 14.2km course.

Team Sky had held the best time the majority of the stage, with Dylan Van Baarle setting an early benchmark at 17-23, before De La Cruz took his turn and moved into the top of the standings.

All eyes were then on Chris Froome, who dropped out of overall contention in Saturday’s tough uphill finish and had promised to ’empty the tank’ in the final day time trial where he was favourite for stage victory.

It wasn’t to be for the four-time Tour winner though, who looked well off his best against the clock with a time of 17-38. That time saw him finish out of the top-10 on the stage but hold on to finish 10th in the overall standings.

Costa Rica’s Andrey Amador came closest to knocking Spaniard De La Cruz off top spot, missing out by six seconds, while his Movistar team-mate Marc Soler put in an impressive ride to clock 17.20 and move up to third overall.

Wellens began his run off the ramp strongly and never looked in too much danger of losing his overall title. However an impressive performance from Poels, who set a time of 17.22, meant Wellens needed to finish with 17.33 to claim victory.

In the end the 26-year-old was able to cross the line with eight seconds to spare, sealing his first GC victory of 2018.


Ruta del Sol 2018, stage five: Barbate – Barbate (14.2km ITT)

1 David De La Cruz (Esp) Team Sky, in 17-11
2 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team, at 6s
3 Stef Clement (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo, at 7s
4 Alexis Gougeard (Fra) AG2R La Mondiale, at 8s
5 Marc Soler (Esp) Movistar Team, at 9s
6 Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky, at 11s
7 Dylan van Baarle (Ned) Team Sky, at 12s
8 Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal, at 14s
9 Jan Tratnik (Slo) CCC Sprandi Polkowice, at 24s
10 Luis León Sanchez (Esp) Astana Pro Team, st

Final overall classification

1 Tim Wellens (Bel) Lotto Soudal, in 17-41-50
2 Wout Poels (Ned) Team Sky, at 8s
3 Marc Soler (Esp) Movistar Team, at 27s
4 Jakob Fuglsang (Den) Astana Pro Team, at 30s
5 Luis León Sanchez (Esp) Astana Pro Team, st
6 Mikel Landa (Esp) Movistar Team, at 42s
7 Steven Kruijswijk (Ned) LottoNL-Jumbo, at 1-19
8 Simon Clarke (Aus) EF Education First-Drapac p/b Cannondale, at 1-41
9 Andrey Amador (CRc) Movistar Team, at 1-51
10 Chris Froome (GBr) Team Sky, at 1-57.

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Sam Busch Resigns From TCU Following Internal Inquiry

Photo Courtesy: TCU

According to a report in the Fort Worth Star Telegram, first-year Texas Christian University head coach Sam Busch has resigned. Busch was placed on paid administrative leave in early February so that the athletic department could conduct “an internal inquiry into program rules, policy and procedure violations.”

While the findings of that inquiry were not made public, TCU athletic director Jeremiah Donati did provide a brief comment according to the report in the Star Telegram: “Coach Busch cooperated with our internal inquiry…After reviewing the facts with us, he decided to resign. I have accepted his resignation, and we wish him the best in his future coaching endeavors.”

Busch was originally hired to lead the program back in August, replacing long-time coach Richard Sybesma, who retired after 38 years at the helm of TCU. Busch had previously been the assistant coach at Virginia for the last four years under his brother, Augie Busch. Assistant Coach Keith Dawley will lead TCU through the upcoming Big 12 Championships, which are from February 21-24 at the University of Texas.

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Adam Blythe given late disqualification after illegal bike change at Tour of Oman

The Briton was unable to contest the final sprint stage of the race after commissaires disqualified him

Former British champion Adam Blythe was left disappointed after being disqualified from the final stage of the Tour of Oman on Sunday.

The 28-year-old received the sanction mid-race after taking an irregular bike change in the closing kilometres of the 135.5km stage between Al Mouj and Matrah Corniche.

>>> Kristoff sprints to final stage victory at Tour of Oman as Lutsenko secures overall victory

The issue arose when Aqua Blue rider Blythe took a bike from the side of the road as the peloton passed the team car, which had gone ahead to prepare the bike.

Both team directeur sportif Martyn Irvine and Blythe himself were too angry speak with Cycling Weekly after the race.

However, the president of the jury – chief commissaire – Jean-Pierre Coppenolle spoke to reporters at the finish line.

“The team manager of Blythe asked if he could go in front To prepare the bike, and I said yes because the new system of brakes is not easy,” Copppenolle said.

“He can go to the front to prepare the bike, but the changing of the bike that must happen behind the bunch and from the car.

“He gives the bike, but from the front, with the new rules it is not allowed.”

Technical support during races is covered by UCI regulation 2.3.029 which states,

“… Mechanical assistance at fixed locations on the course is limited to wheel changes only except for races on a circuit where bike changes can be made in the authorized zones.

“Any mechanical assistance which fails to meet the obligations above will result in the disqualification of the rider either immediately, or after the race if proven by any means and verified by the commissaires (article 12.1.001).”

The following regulation, 2.3.030 continues

“Whatever the position of a rider in the race, he may receive such assistance and mechanical check (brakes for example) only to the rear of his bunch and when stationary…”

Spare bikes at the Tour of Oman are transported in modified pick up trucks, the bikes carried sideways with the front wheel removed.

This year Aqua Blue have been riding the new 3T Strada which not only boasts a single chainring set up, but also disc brakes.

Last week during stage two of the Dubai Tour, Quick-Step Floors’ sprinter Elia Viviani suffered a puncture with 20km remaining and the consequent wheel change took 50 seconds to complete. Viviani won that stage, but it was that sort of delay Aqua Blue may have been trying to avoid.

Blythe’s disappointment is wholly justified as the incident meant he was unable to contest the sprint finish later won by Alexander Kristoff (UAE Emirates).

With third place on the final stage of the Dubai Tour last week and three other recent top 10 results, Blythe has shown good sprint form this year, and missed out on the chance of victory as a result of the disqualification.

It went form bad to worse for Aqua Blue in the race as Blythe’s lead out man Shane Archbold was in excellent position in the final kilometre, but suffered a mechanical and he too was unable to contest the sprint.

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Chris Wood beaten to Oman Open by Joost Luiten

Joost Luiten (left) and Chris Wood

Oman Open result
-16 J Luiten (Ned); -14 C Wood (Eng); -13 J Guerrier (Fra); -11 J Campillo (Spa), S Han (US), A Levy (Fra); -10 R Rock (Eng), F Zanotti
Selected others: -9 S Gallacher (Sco), M Southgate (Eng); -8 A Johnston (Eng)
Full leaderboard

England’s Chris Wood was beaten by two shots at the Oman Open as Dutchman Joost Luiten won the tournament.

Luiten carded a final round 68 to finish on 16 under, while Wood ended on 14 under after hitting a 69.

The two were level at the turn for the back nine but a bogey by Wood on the 17th proved crucial as he narrowly missed out on the title.

“I’m pretty down but in the grand scheme of things it’s night and day to how I’ve been,” said Wood.

“After a couple of days I’m sure I’ll reflect and see it’s a big step in the right direction this week.”

Wood, who was part of the 2016 Ryder Cup team, had missed his first three cuts of the season.

“It’s always tough to win out here, all these guys are so good and they keep putting pressure on you,” said Luiten.

“Down the stretch I hit some nice shots, I made some nice putts and it was a nice battle with my friend Woody.

“I need to win another couple to get into the Ryder Cup team but it’s a great start to the year for me.”

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SEC Video Interviews: Jing Quah, Anna Belousova & Javier Acevedo

Photo Courtesy: Thomas Campbell/Texas A&M Athletics

After the Saturday evening session at the SEC championships, Swimming World caught up with individual event champions Jing QuahAnna Belousova and Javier Acevedo. Check out full video interviews below.

Quah, a freshman at Texas A&M, re-lived her 200 fly final, when she took the race out hard and held on for an upset win. The Singapore also discussed how she has adjusted to live in the U.S. at A&M, especially considering she came to school while just 16 years old, and how watching her brother Zheng Quah make the transition to NCAA swimming (at Cal) made her’s easier.

Quah’s teammate Belousova discussed her win over fellow Aggie Jorie Caneta in the 100 breast. Belousova explained that the duo did not care who finished ahead of who, so long as they swept the top two spots on the podium. In her first year in College Station, Belousova explained her own transition and what it’s like having so much support at a home SEC champs.

Acevedo, a sophomore for Georgia, discussed his come-from-behind victory in the 100 back, where he out-split runner-up Luke Kaliszak by more than a second on the last 50. Acevedo explained what he was thinking as he pulled off the win and what he has taken away from being teammates with the likes of Chase Kalisz and Gunnar Bentz at Georgia.

Check out more video interviews from the SEC championships.

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Sunday trading: Big discounts on Vittoria tyres, DMT shoes and Castelli kit

Revamp your wardrobe and give your bike some love with some of these wicked deals

Another weekend, another couple of rides in the bag getting you ready for spring and summer. It’s only round the corner now, so these deals are designed to get you ready for the better weather. We’ve got fast rolling tyres, great spring shorts and some fancy shoes.

The products featured have been chosen because we know they’re good quality and are an excellent offer at the price we’ve included (at the time of writing). Our tech team have unrivalled expertise and years of experience testing new products, so you can trust our recommendations – and we also know what represents a good deal.

With each product is a ‘Buy Now’ link. If you click on this then we may receive a small amount of money from the retailer when you purchase the item. This doesn’t affect the amount you pay.

Vittoria Corsa G+ clincher twin pack was £109, now £68

Vittoria Corsa Speed

Available in 25c, too

Read more: Vittoria Corsa G+ clincher review

These are without some of the best tyres on the market right now. They’re made of four compounds, and have a kevlar reinforced sidewall. The biggest talking point, though, is the use of graphene. It’s 200 times stronger than steel and very light.

We’ve reviewed these tyres and we found them very fast, with the second lowest rolling resistance of any tyre we’ve tested. With summer coming up these could be the best upgrade purchase you make.

Buy now: Vittoria Corsa G+ clincher twin pack at ProBikeKit for £68

DMT R3 road shoes were £175, now £87.50

These good looking road shoes are now almost £100 off. Depending on the colour you choose, there’s lot of sizes available. In terms of technology, DMT has given the shoes a Boa dial, a full carbon sole and an upper dedicated to suit narrower feet.

Buy now: DMT R3 road shoe at Wiggle for £87.50 

Castelli Omloop thermal bib shorts were £125, now £90

Read more: Castelli Omloop thermal bib shorts review

Castelli’s winter busting thermal shorts are now discounted by a whopping 28%. We’ve reviewed these particular models and love the fact that they’re super warm, lightweight and breathable with, as with most of Castelli’s kit, great rain protection.

This is a great price for these shorts that’ll see you right through until Summer.

Buy now: Castelli Omloop thermal bib shorts at Tredz for £90 

32 servings of SIS Rego Rapid Recovery for £22.95

We’re massive fans of SIS, and its bars are often our first choice when out on the bike. This recovery drink is one of the few that’s actually tasty and beneficial. There’s a choice of four flavours: strawberry, chocolate, banana and our favourite, vanilla.

Buy now: SIS Rego rapid recovery at Evans Cycles for £22

More great bargains:

Continental GP4000S II was £59, now £27.50

Castelli Perfetto long Sleeve Jersey was £175, now £105

FSA Team Issue 11 speed chain was £44.99, now £19.99

Gore Lady short sleeve baselayer was £34.99, now £13.99

Louis Garneau Heros RTR helmet was £129.99, now from £38.99

Eddy Merckx Milano 72 Tiagra Disc ladies’ bike was £2000, now 899

Vittoria Rubino Pro G+ Isotech tyre was £34.99, now from £19.99

Shimano 105 5800 pedals were £109.99, now £65.99

Endura Xtract short sleeve jersey was $34.99, now £13.99

DT Swiss R522 wheelset was £199.99, now £109.99

Bkool Smart Pro 2 turbo trainer was £499.99, now £348.99

Zipp Service Course SL-70 bars were £90, now £55.29

Wilier GTR Team Endurance 105 Disc bike was £2399, now £1919.99

Lizard Skins La Sal 2.0 mitts were £25, now £9.89

Sealskinz Lightweight Overshoes were £38, now £24.69

Deda Geco pure rubber bar tape was £17.99, now £14.69

Fabric Scoop Flat Elite saddle was £44.99, now £30.49

Shimano Ultegra R6800 11-speed cassette was £79.99, now £51.99

More deals next week in the ever-popular Sunday Trading.

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