Record-breaker slams media
The most decorated Spanish swimmer of all time, Mireia Belmonte Garcia, has launched a stinging attack on the coverage of the sport in her homeland after breaking two world records at the World Cup meet in Berlin last weekend. Belmonte followed up winning two silvers and a bronze medal at the world championships in Barcelona by breaking the short course records in the 400m and 800m freestyle events in the German capital, becoming the first woman to ever go under eight minutes for the 800m in the process. She said her success was even more remarkable given the lack of funding provided for the trip by the Spanish swimming authorities. “I had to travel by bus for nine hours from Eindhoven [where the previous World Cup meet had been held] to Berlin with my legs totally cramped. When I arrived they were ready to burst. I had swam 16 times in four days and I needed to relax, but I just had to grin and bare it,” she told Spanish newspaper ABC. The 22-year-old compared the coverage her plight and records received in the national press to the country’s soccer team. “I am the first woman to go under eight minutes in the history of swimming, but a rumor about a [soccer] signing or the color of Sergio Ramos’ hair is more important,” she said.
Stybar wins Eneco stage
Zdenek Stybar of the Czech Republic won the third stage of the Eneco Tour of the Low Countries on Wednesday, as France’s Arnaud Demare retained the overall lead. However, Britain’s Bradley Wiggins, the last year’s Tour de France winner, saw his indifferent form continue. Wiggins trailed in, well down the field in 139th place at the end of the 187.3km ride from Oosterhout to Brouwersdam in the Netherlands. Stybar, riding for the Omega Pharma-Quick Step team, beat Argentina’s Ariel Maximiliano Richeze of Lampre and Dutchman Lars Boom of the Belkin team in a sprint finish.
Medalist calls for boycott
Germany’s former world cycling champion and London 2012 silver medalist Judith Arndt has criticized Russia’s laws against homosexuality and called for a boycott of next year’s Winter Olympics in Sochi. In June, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law against “homosexual propaganda” punishing any act which educates minors about homosexuality. The law has been criticized as discriminatory by human rights groups. Arndt criticized the International Olympic Committee for awarding the Games to Sochi. “We should boycott Sochi,” Arndt told German broadcaster Sport1. “They simply should not have awarded the Games to Russia. In addition to the new laws, the system in Russia is inhumane. Countries like that should not be allowed to host these events — the same goes for China and Beijing in 2008.” The 37-year-old is in a same-sex relationship and won a time trial silver medal at last year’s London Olympics.
76ers name Brown as coach
The Philadelphia 76ers have appointed San Antonio Spurs’ assistant Brett Brown as their new coach. Brown was officially named the 24th head coach in team history on Wednesday after a four-month search to replace Doug Collins. “I’m not a gypsy coach,” Brown said. “I like commitment from both sides. It’s hard sitting there going through a normal rebuild process. You have to stay focused on what you’re here for.”