There are 245 days until Sochi 2014. The following is a brief sampling of the news and events that occurred today.
ROME (AP) — Justin Gatlin beat Usain Bolt by one-hundredth of a second Thursday to win the 100 meters at the Golden Gala meet — the Jamaican’s first significant loss since his false-start disqualification at the 2011 world championships in South Korea. Gatlin was timed in 9.94 seconds and was restrained in his celebration. The American has won all five of his 100-meter races this year and is shaping up as a serious threat to Bolt at the world championships in Moscow in August. Bolt briefly covered his face with his hands after the race, then saluted the crowd.
Champion swimmer and Hollywood star Esther Williams, best known for her “aqua-musicals” of the 1940s, passed away Thursday in LA. She was 91. Williams was never able to compete in the Helsinki Olympics, due to the outbreak of World War II that led to the cancelation of the 1940 and ’44 Games, but she’s often credited with the IOC adopting synchronized swimming into its program in 1984, and served as a TV analyst for its inauguration. “The life she had goes without saying,” her spokesperson and close friend for more than 15 years, Harlan Boll, told NBC News.“She stood out among other people. She’s the godmother of synchronized swimming and is the reason it became an Olympic sport.”
The International Olympic Committee officially opened up the two-year, three-phase bidding process for hosting the 2022 Winter Games Thursday, with many cities already declaring intentions of bringing the event home. Oslo, Norway immediately threw its hat into the proverbial ring and is expected to be a strong contender, while Poland and Slovakia are expected to send in a joint bid soon, and Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych called for four cities to prepare proposals for the Games. Other cities considering a bid are Almaty, Kazakhstan, which helped host the 1997 Asian Winter Games; Sarajevo, which hosted the 1984 Winter Olympics; Munich, which hosted the Summer Games in 1972 and lost in its bid for the 2018 Winters to Pyeongchang, South Korea; and Stockholm, which hasn’t hosted the Olympics in more than a century.