Six Colorado Springs triathletes will try to secure Olympic berths at the final World Cup, which begins today in Beijing.
The women's triathlon features Sarah Haskins and Sara McLarty. Haskins won a silver medal at the Pan American Games, and McLarty was last year's under-23 national champion.
On the men's side, Olympians Hunter Kemper and Andy Potts highlight a field that includes Brian Fleischmann and Matt Reed. Kemper is a two-time Olympian who finished the 2005 season ranked No. 1 in the world. Potts is a 2004 Olympian who won a gold medal at the Pan American Games. Fleischmann is a three-time runner-up at elite nationals, and Reed is the 2004 national champion.
"It will be a challenging course and a world-class field, so the bar has been set pretty high," Potts said. "I want to have a great race, but nothing is going to be given to anyone on race day. You are definitely going to have to earn a high finish."
Said Haskins: "This is the pinnacle race of the year for me. I am ready to put it all on the line and give it everything I have."
The top men's finisher and the top women's finisher will earn spots on the U.S. team for the 2008 Beijing Games. The next two spots will be awarded at the U.S. Olympic team trials in Honolulu on April 26, 2008. The final two team members will be named after the Hy-Vee Triathlon in Des Moines, Iowa, on June 22, 2008.
Pate fifth in Missouri stage race
Colorado Springs rider Danny Pate finished fifth Thursday in the time trial of the Tour of Missouri, a 563-mile race that's part of the inaugural USA Cycling Pro Tour.
Pate, sponsored by Slipstream/Chipotle, completed the 18-mile time trial in 41 minutes, 41 seconds, more than two minutes off the pace of Discovery Channel rider Levi Leipheimer, who won the stage by finishing in 39:37.
After four of six stages, Pate is in 15th place, 14:27 behind leader George Hincapie, also a Discovery Channel rider. The fifth stage, a 123-mile race that ends in St. Charles, Mo., will be contested Saturday.
Junior shooting nationals coming to Fort Carson
About 200 people are expected to compete in the USA Shooting Junior Olympic National Championships, which begin Saturday at Fort Carson.
Participants were selected by invitation. Shooters from each state will compete in trap, double trap and skeet.
A look at the schedule:
Saturday: Men's and women's trap training
Sunday: Men's and women's trap preliminary rounds
Monday: Men's and women's trap finals
Tuesday: Men's double trap training
Wednesday: Men's double trap finals
Thursday: Men's and women's skeet training
Sept. 21: Men's and women's skeet preliminary rounds
Sept. 22: Men's and women's skeet finals
Springs coach in charge of Paralympic team
Colorado Springs resident Troy Engle is coach of the U.S. Paralympics national track and field team.
Engle will oversee a 43-person team that was selected based on results at the U.S. Paralympics Track & Field National Championships and the Parapan American Games this summer. He has served as national team coach since November, when he left Occidental (Calif.) College after a seven-year stint as track and field and cross country coach.
Hogan named OTC Coach of Month
Tom Hogan, an assistant coach for the U.S. women's volleyball national team, has been named the first Coach of the Month at the Olympic Training Center.
Hogan is in his third season with the national team. He previously served as an assistant coach for the women's junior national team, helping the squad win a gold medal at the 2004 NORCECA Women's Junior Continental Championship.