Mario Cipollini will not be invited to the Tour de France after all, a spokesman for his team confirmed Monday. \nThe world road race champion was hoping Tour officials would alter their plans and offer a last-minute invitation to his Domina Vacanze team, but the Italian sprinter was notified Monday that would not be the case. \nClaudio Santi, the director of the Italian cyclists federation, was told of the decision by Tour director Jean-Marie Leblanc, Cipollini's team spokesman Gilberto Petrucci confirmed. \nThe decision was bound to be met by heavy criticism in cycling circles. \nTwo weeks ago, when Cipollini's team was not named as one of the final four wild card entries for this year's Tour, Leblanc was besieged by calls to admit the "king of the sprinters." \nMany of Cipollini's fellow cyclists, among them four-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong, and team officials said the world champion's team should gain automatic entry into cycling's most prestigious event. \nFollowing the latest rejection, Cipollini released a brief statement saying he prefers ``not to talk about the decision.'' \nTour officials were unavailable for comment late Monday. \nCipollini recently set the all-time record of 42 stage wins in the Giro d'Italia, the second most prestigious race in the sport, eclipsing the 70-year-old record previously held by Alfredo Binda. \nHe has won 12 stages in the Tour de France, but never completed the race.
Two women yesterday morning attempted to hang a banner from the Acropolis in Athens in protest at the upcoming Beijing Winter Olympics, but were detained by Greek police. The women, 18-year-old Tibetan student Tsela Zoksang and 22-year-old exiled Hong Konger Joey Siu (邵嵐), both US citizens, are members of the “No Beijing 2022” campaign, a statement from the New York-based organization Students for a Free Tibet said. They, and a third person, entered the archeological site as paying customers, and then Zoksang and Siu climbed some scaffolding, from which they attempted to unfurl the banner. A security officer rushed to them and took
TREBLE CHANCE: Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei is eyeing a third title in the California desert after winning in 2014 with Peng Shuai and in 2018 with Barbora Strycova Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Belgian partner Elise Mertens on Thursday cruised into the women’s doubles final at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California. It took second seeds Hsieh and Mertens just 54 minutes to defeat Japanese third seeds Shuko Aoyama and Ena Shibahara 6-2, 6-0 in the semi-finals to advance to their second final as a duo. Hsieh and Mertens denied the Japanese duo, winners of a WTA Tour-best five titles this year, a spot in their sixth final of the season as they broke serve five times and won the final nine games. “We’re very happy about the performance. Just
HUSBAND WANTED: Athletics Kenya said the country had lost a jewel who was one of the fastest-rising athletes on the global stage thanks to her eye-catching performances Record-breaking Kenyan distance runner Agnes Tirop was on Wednesday found dead with stab wounds to her stomach in a suspected homicide, athletics officials said. Police said that they were on the hunt for her husband over the incident at Tirop’s home in the high-altitude training hub of Iten, Kenya. Tirop, 25, was a fast-rising athlete — a double world 10,000m bronze medalist and 2015 world cross country champion who also finished fourth in the 5,000m at the Tokyo Olympics this year. Only last month, she smashed the women-only 10km world record at the Road to Records Event in Germany, with a time of
It is the world’s longest certified foot race: a 4,989km run that takes participants around the same New York block 5,649 times. Thousands of people have climbed Everest — but just 49 have completed the Sri Chinmoy Self-Transcendence 3,100 Mile Race, organizers say. Runners finish more than two marathons a day for almost two months, on less than five hours of sleep a night. They cannot rely on changing scenery to keep them motivated as the route is a 883m loop on a concrete sidewalk around a high school in Jamaica, Queens. To mix things up a bit, they alternate between running clockwise