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Sports in brief: Sprinter Bolt says he is backing off record chasing for now


Bolt backs off record chasing — for this year

SHANGHAI, China — Jamaica's Usain Bolt won the 200 meters at the Diamond League meet Sunday, cruising to victory in 19.76 seconds.

The world and Olympic champion at 100 and 200 meters was never tested and looked relaxed as he finished ahead of Americans Angelo Taylor (20.34) and Ryan Bailey (20.43).

Bolt's time was well off his world record of 19.19 at last summer's world championships in Berlin.

Bolt began his season with a year's best 9.86 seconds in capturing the 100 at Daegu in South Korea. There was no men's 100 at the Shanghai meet.

The Jamaican said he doesn't feel pressure to set new marks, citing this season's lack of an Olympics or world championships.

"This year I said I'm not going to chase any records," Bolt said. "If (American rival) Tyson (Gay) decides that he wants to break a record, fine with me."


Aussie veteran switches to U.S.

Australian triathlete Greg Bennett, who won the St. Anthony's event in St. Petersburg in 2005, has switched his allegiances to the United States so he can be part of his wife's 2012 Olympic campaign.

Triathlon Australia granted a request by Bennett, 38, to be released from his Aussie obligations.

Bennett has dual citizenship, marrying U.S. triathlete Laura Bennett — formerly Reback — in 2004.

There was no indication whether Greg Bennett, who still trains regularly, planned to attempt to qualify for the U.S. team in 2012.


Allegations give way to riding

Michael Rogers of Australia won the Tour of California, emerging from a talented field to capture a race overshadowed by doping talk. Rogers beat American David Zabriskie by nine seconds, repelling repeated challenges during the 83½-mile final stage near Thousand Oaks.

American and three-time champ Levi Leipheimer was third. The U.S. team lost Lance Armstrong after he crashed Thursday.

That's the same day Armstrong was accused of doping and helping others cheat by former teammate Floyd Landis. Armstrong denied Landis' accusations.

After his win, Rogers addressed the issue of doping in cycling: "I'm getting a little bit sick of all this stuff."

Et cetera

Horses: Jockey Julien Leparoux will be sidelined at least five more weeks with a spine injury suffered in a spill during the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on May 14. He has a compression fracture in his vertebrae, the result of his horse tumbling after clipping heels with another horse. Leparoux rode the next day in the Preakness Stakes, finishing 11th.

Soccer: Argentina coach Diego Maradona says Diego Milito, who scored both goals in Inter Milan's Champions League final victory, adds firepower to his team for the World Cup, but Milito is still slated to be a reserve. Maradona has said he may play three forwards — Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain and Carlos Tevez.

Times wires

Sports in brief: Sprinter Bolt says he is backing off record chasing for now 05/23/10 [Last modified: Sunday, May 23, 2010 10:11pm]
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