Winter sports: Abbott leads at U.S.figure skating championships
Boston • Three-time winner Jeremy Abbott set a national record for the short program Friday night, putting his second Olympic berth within reach.
Abbott won the event with 99.86 points at the U.S. Championships, shattering his own mark of 90.23. He has a 7.82-point margin over Richard Dornbush heading into Sunday's free skate.
The top two men will go to Sochi next month. Abbott was the 2010 U.S. champ but finished ninth at the Vancouver Games as countryman Evan Lysacek won gold.
Earlier, world champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White danced within range of their sixth straight U.S. title by romping in the short dance. Indeed, the current world champions and 2010 Olympic silver medalists could have danced all night and never been caught.
Skating to selections from "My Fair Lady," Davis and White broke their own record with 80.69 points to build more than a seven-point lead on Madison Chock and Evan Bates. Siblings Maia and Alex Shibutani were third; three teams will go to Sochi.
West Jordan's Kendrick Weston finished seventh in the intermediate men's division. The 13-year-old performed the sixth-best free skate of the competition, scoring 60.35 points to finish with 96.02 just 0.11 points out of sixth place.
Salt Lake City's Angela Wang, the last of seven Utahns to compete at the championships, is scheduled to compete in the women's senior level free skate on Saturday night. She's in 12th place after the short program.
Alpine skiing • Bode Miller has been cleared to race in all five Alpine events at the Sochi Olympics, including defending his super-combined title. The International Ski Federation clarified its qualification rules after confusion this week about whether some top racers had achieved enough results.
Slopestyle •Bobby Brown and Keri Herman won a weathered-shortened skiing slopestyle event at the U.S. Grand Prix in Breckinridge, Colo. Given the heavy snow and low visibility, the race jury decided to cancel the final Friday, making the qualifying marks the official results in accordance to FIS Freestyle rules.
Ski jumping • Three-time Olympic ski jump champion Thomas Morgenstern of Austria suffered skull injuries and a bruised lung in a ski flying crash in Tauplitz, Austria, on Friday, 30 days before the opening event at the Sochi Games. The Austrian ski federation said Morgenstern was "conscious and well responsive" and his condition would be monitored in the intensive care unit of a Salzburg hospital for the next 72 hours.
Snowboarding • German snowboarder Alexander Bergmann won a parallel slalom Friday for his first World Cup victory, and Patrizia Kummer of Switzerland took the women's event in Bad Gastein, Austria. Bergmann defeated Andreas Prommegger of Austria in the final of the single-run format.