September 7th marked the beginning of the battle for the 2013 America's Cup
between defending Oracle Team USA and challenging Emirates Team New Zealand. As the winners of the last cup, the Golden Gate Yacht Club decided that this year's Cup match would take place in a new class of boat, the AC72
wing sail catamaran. Almost as much airplane as sailboat, these extraordinary craft are designed to lift out of the water
, allowing them to sail faster than the wind
and reach astonishing speeds of up to 50 knots. It was hailed as the pinnacle of the sport until a May 2013 capsize and death of Swedish crew member Andrew Simpson had some calling it the world's most dangerous sailboat
. [more inside]
posted by annekate
on Sep 22, 2013 -
In 2009, ESPN producer Lisa Fenn worked on a story about two high-school wrestlers, Leroy Sutton and Dartanyon Crockett. Sutton was hit by a train when he was a child and had both his legs amputated; Crockett is legally blind. After the story aired, Fenn stayed in Sutton and Crockett's lives, and the three formed a surprising, enduring bond. [more inside]
posted by Charity Garfein
on Jul 9, 2013 -
Grantland checks in with 1980s megastar Huey Lewis
, who is "hard at play," still relentlessly touring at the age of 62.
After tonight's concert, the band will shower, the crew will load out, and Lewis's 25-person caravan (which he refers to as his "small business") will hop back on their buses and drive 403 miles to Anderson, Indiana, for tomorrow night's gig at a horse track and casino. In the next seven days, Lewis will play five shows in places like Paducah, Kentucky, and Quapaw, Oklahoma, along with bigger cities like Dallas and Cincinnati. Even with the gaudy 1980s sales statistics, Huey Lewis and the News has the work ethic of a 2010s indie band.
posted by porn in the woods
on Jul 7, 2013 -
The Other Redskins.
62 US high schools in 22 states currently use the name "Redskins" for one of their sports teams. 28 high schools in 18 states have dropped the mascot over the last 25 years. As public pressure
continues to intensify
on the Washington Redskins
football team to change their name -- one many consider a racial slur
that disparages Native Americans -- similar debates are being waged in towns across the country about their local high school teams.
posted by zarq
on Jul 2, 2013 -
"Bicycle helmets do an outstanding job of keeping our skulls intact in a major crash. But they do almost nothing to prevent concussions and other significant brain injuries—and the very government agency created to protect us is part of the problem. The time has come to demand something safer
posted by killdevil
on Jun 18, 2013 -
Frank Deford, a 50-year veteran of Sports Illustrated, once labeled Meltzer the most accomplished reporter in sports journalism.
“You could cover the Vatican or State Department,” Deford said recently, “and not do as good a job as Dave Meltzer does on wrestling.”
For nearly 30 years, Dave Meltzer has published the Wrestling Observer Newsletter
, featuring weekly behind the locker room door insight into the business of professional wrestling.
How far reaching has Meltzer's impact been? In one famous incident, Hulk Hogan, frustrated by what he perceived as consistently negative coverage in the publication, burned a copy
of the newsletter during a live Pay-Per-View event.
posted by The Gooch
on May 15, 2013 -
Controversy struck the exalted Augusta grounds of the Masters golf tournament on Friday as Tiger Woods put himself at risk of disqualification.
It all began with a situation in which Woods had the extraordinarily bad luck of bouncing his ball off the flagstick on the 15th hole into the water. Instead of dropping his ball "as nearly as possible"
to it's original position, Woods dropped it a couple of yards back. In an interview after the round, Woods said: "I went back to where I played it from, but I went two yards further back and I took, tried to take two yards off the shot of what I felt I hit and that should land me short of the flag and not have it either hit the flag or skip over the back."
Woods signed his scorecard without assigning himself the two shot penalty the rules of golf require for an improper drop.
The following day, the Masters Rules Committee ruled that Woods would not be disqualified for signing an incorrect scorecard, justifying it by using a new rule that allows tournament committees to waive rules infractions called in by TV viewers, even though the intention of that rule was to prevent disqualifications based on tiny movements of the ball or sand imperceptible to the golfer but visible on close-up HD shots.
Many in the golf world were outraged
at both the ruling and the fact that Woods didn't withdraw himself from the tournament. Nick Faldo suggested it would be "the manly thing to do." [more inside]
posted by fairmettle
on Apr 14, 2013 -
Becoming the All-Terrain Human: [New York Times]
"Kilian Jornet Burgada is the most dominating endurance athlete of his generation. In just eight years, Jornet has won more than 80 races, claimed some 16 titles and set at least a dozen speed records, many of them in distances that would require the rest of us to purchase an airplane ticket. He has run across entire landmasses (Corsica) and mountain ranges (the Pyrenees), nearly without pause. He regularly runs all day eating only wild berries and drinking only from streams."
posted by Fizz
on Mar 23, 2013 -
"Our brackets have culled out all of the superfluous information and reduced the [NCAA] tournament to what matters most: colors and logos
posted by Iridic
on Mar 19, 2013 -
"Like a lot of things in Alaska, the annual Mount Marathon Race in Seward is famously brutal, even dangerous. Which is precisely why Michael LeMaitre ran it--the last day he was seen alive
posted by vidur
on Feb 21, 2013 -
"Organized crime gangs have fixed or tried to fix hundreds of soccer matches around the world in recent years, including World Cup and European Championship qualifiers and two Champions League games, Europol announced
Monday. The European Union's police agency said an 18-month review
found 380 suspicious matches in Europe and another 300 questionable games outside the continent, mainly in Africa, Asia and South and Central America. It also found evidence that a Singapore-based crime syndicate was involved in some of the match-fixing."* [more inside]
posted by ericb
on Feb 4, 2013 -
From the most recent Boston Magazine.
"The Boston sports media, once considered one of the country’s best and most influential press corps, is stumbling toward irrelevance. The national media not only seems to break more big Boston sports stories than the local press, but also often features more sophisticated analysis, especially when it comes to using advanced statistics. To put it bluntly, “The Lodge”—as Fred Toucher, cohost of the 98.5 The Sports Hub morning radio show, mockingly refers to the city’s clubby, self-important media establishment—is clogged with stale reporters, crotchety columnists, and shameless blowhards. "
There's even a whole blog dedicated to hating Dan Shaughnessy, Dan Shaughnessy Watch
, aka the CHB
posted by Melismata
on Jan 29, 2013 -
"We're just trying to lead normal lives, doing what we want to do.
Why shouldn't we?" The members [of Afghanistan women's national team], who range in age from 16 to 24, are up against widespread resentment from their relatives* and neighbors, and threats from men who disapprove of women playing sports
. They managed to participate in an inclusive tournament in Berlin
and they registered their first official win as they defeated Pakistan national women's team 4-0 and reached the semi-finals of the 2nd SAFF women's championship in 2012 improving on their past performance (rough 2010 SAFF footage
). They're able to practice just three times a week for 90 minutes, occasionally at the stadium
) or in its gym, but more often at a helicopter landing pad on a base for NATO troops, where practices are interrupted by takeoffs and landings.
Players have some outside support from hummel
, the sponsor of the women's
and the men's
team, and have had football clinics in Stuttgart
and with Olympic U.S. player Lorrie Fair in Kabul
. [more inside]
posted by ersatz
on Jan 19, 2013 -
The You Can Play
project was created by GForce sports, former Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke, and his son Patrick Burke to ensure that LGBT athletes have equal opportunity in professional hockey. [more inside]
posted by jessamyn
on Jan 16, 2013 -
"Las Vegas bookmakers make their money by balancing their risk, but sometimes they simply come out on the wrong side of too many bets." With the regular 2012 NFL season now over and the playoffs about to begin, please take a moment and shed a tear -- or more likely, raise your beer -- as you consider the terrible beating Las Vegas sports books absorbed in 2012.
(LAT link, so potentially behind a paywall depending on your number of previous visits in last 30 days.) [more inside]
posted by mosk
on Jan 2, 2013 -