Kwan song way off-key
Forget the triple Salchow. Kwan's signature maneuver could become the downward career spiral now that she's dumped coach Frank Carroll, who guided her to four world titles. At Skate Canada this month, after suffering her first third-place finish since 1996, Kwan said, "At this point I just have to believe in myself." With the Salt Lake City Olympics less than three months off, the breakup—which both Kwan and Carroll say was based on a difference in skating philosophies—makes no sense. If Kwan cares to watch a skater peaking at the right time, she need only note the recent improvement of U.S. men's champ Timothy Goebel, who is coached by... Carroll.
Sweden's Lyudmila Engquist, the 1996 Olympic champ in the 100-meter hurdles, had taken up bobsledding and hoped to become the first woman to win gold medals in Winter and Summer Games. Two weeks ago, however, facing an out-of-competition test, she fessed up to using steroids. Engquist, 37, called her decision to use the drugs "incredibly stupid." She survived breast cancer in '99 and tearfully told SI during a subsequent track comeback that she feared her previous steroid use (her first husband admitted to having spiked her vitamin supplements) might have made her more vulnerable to cancer. She could still face legal charges in Sweden stemming from her admission that she smuggled steroids into that country from Russia last summer.
U.S. weightlifting officials felt it was unsafe to send a team to the world championships in Antalya, Turkey, this month, but Jackie Berube went anyway. Berube, 29, of Escanaba, Mich., even raised $3,000 to fund the trip. A former world wrestling silver medalist who stands only five feet tall, Berube placed fifth in the 128-pound class in Antalya, but she became a giant in the Turkish press, which dubbed her American Braveheart. Meet organizers awarded her a special trophy for courage and provided her with two female bodyguards, whom she dubbed Charlie's Angels.