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  • 20 Aug
    Australian cycling star Richie Porte has gone to hospital with a suspected broken collarbone, ending his Rio Olympics.The Australian team had ridden perfectly in the mens road race on Saturday before Porte crashed on a steep descent with less than 40km left in the pulsating 237.5km race.Portes BMC teammate, Belgian Greg van Avermaet, outsprinted Dane Jakob Fuglsang at Fort Copacabana to win the gold medal, with Pole Rafal Majka finishing five seconds behind for the bronze.Simon Clarke was the only Australian finisher in 25th place, six minutes 12 seconds behind the two leaders.Porte was a medal contender in the road race and also was a strong chance in Wednesdays road time trial.Teammate Rohan Dennis will be Australias only entrant in the time trial and he is also a medal favourite.Richie actually made the joke as he was lying there in the gutter, in quite a lot of pain, Macca, I dont think Im in for the time trial, said Australian mens road coach Brad McGee.It looks like the collarbone is done, maybe something around his ribs.He didnt lose consciousness and hes in good spirits, but obviously in a lot of pain.Theres definitely a few breaks in there somewhere.It was unclear whether Porte would need surgery.The crash and injury continues his rotten luck.While he finished a breakthrough fifth in last months Tour de France, he would have been runner-up had he not suffered an ill-timed puncture on stage two.Porte also crashed on the chaotic Mt Ventoux stage.You want to put a medal around his neck and unfortunately its eventuated the way it is, McGee said of Porte.While unwilling to predict how Porte might have done, McGee admitted the Australian teamwork had helped put him in an ideal scenario.Porte had to stop twice earlier in the race to fix his chain, but otherwise was riding well.He was definitely right where we wanted him, McGee said.The boys, limited as we were in firepower, they did exactly what was needed.He was there, ready to shine, so where would he have ended up? We dont know.Its definitely disappointing, but were not broken ... hell be back.McGee added Dennis was showing strong form ahead of the time trial, his main objective for Rio.We know Rohan off the bike, hes a bit of a scallywag at times, McGee said.But on the bike, in the job, hes just on fire.He was definitely in the zone today and we look forward to that on Wednesday.Dennis and mountain biker Scott Bowden pulled out of the race early, as planned, to save themselves for their main Olympic events. Daniel Jones Womens Jersey . From filmmaker Nanette Burstein (On the Ropes), The Price of Gold revisits the saga that rocked the figure skating world ahead of the 1994 Lillehammer Olympic Winter Games: the assault on Nancy Kerrigan, and the plot that led its way back to her rival Tonya Harding. Phil Simms Womens Jersey . -- Jaye Marie Green shot a 4-under 68 on Thursday to increase her lead to five strokes after the second round of the LPGA Tours qualifying tournament. [url=http://www.nygiantsfanaticshop.com/Black-Deandre-Baker-Giants-Jersey.html?cat=967]http://www.nygiantsfanaticshop.com/Black-Deandre-Baker-Giants-Jersey.html?cat=967 . Coach Tom Thibodeau says the former MVP will probably start travelling with the team in the next few weeks. Rose tore the meniscus in his right knee at Portland in November and was ruled out for the remainder of the season by the Bulls. Phil McConkey Womens Jersey . -- There were so many positives from the Orlando Magics first victory of the season that it was hard for coach Jacque Vaughn to stop praising his players. Mark Bavaro Jersey . After a first half in which he thought "the lid was on the basket," the Toronto Raptors coach watched his squad mount a second half surge to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers 98-91. RIO DE JANEIRO -- Copacabana Beach is an Olympic construction site. The beach volleyball venue is going up, broadcast studios rise on scaffolding above the sand and a mammoth tent is jammed with thousands of pricey souvenirs.But there are few signs across town in crumbling, working-class areas that the Rio de Janeiro Olympics open in just a month.Promises that hosting the Games would remake even Rios most ramshackle neighborhoods have been eclipsed by myriad problems: security threats and soaring violence, the Zika virus, slow ticket sales, and water pollution in venues for sailing, rowing and distance swimming.Hanging over it all is the impeachment trial of President Dilma Rousseff, expected to start days after the Olympics end.Where I live, we dont see changes like these, said Julia Alves, an 18-year-old student speaking in the citys renovated port area. She was among almost a dozen people asked by The Associated Press how the games would change the city -- or individual lives -- in interviews at the port, outside the Olympic Park and on the streets in a working-class neighborhood.They are things for foreigners, Alves added.Rios organizers have budgeted about $2 billion for operations. In addition, another $10 billion-$12 billion in public and private money is being spent on urban transportation projects driven by the Olympics.Rio has installed new high-speed buses and a light-rail system to serve downtown. And theres a still-unfinished $3 billion subway line extension to connect the upscale Copacabana and Ipanema beach areas with the western suburb of Barra da Tijuca -- site of the Olympic Park. Its unclear if the subway line will be running when the Summer Games open on Aug. 5.The public-works splurge has generated civic pride, suspicion and some anger.The Olympics are bringing an incomparable legacy, in regard to the changes in the citys infrastructure, said Marco Araujo, a 48-year-old badminton coach speaking outside the Olympic Park. We are still working on these projects. But I think that once they are completed, these projects will benefit the population.A bike lane, suspended high above the sea and built as an Olympic legacy project, collapsed in April and killed two.The Olympics touch mostly the wealthy areas south and west of the city, where the real estate market was booming until a few years ago. Rios northern favelas, the citys infamous slums, feel only a ripple, underscoring the vast gap between the rich and poor -- the white, brown and black, in a divided city.Maria da Penha is bitter. Her home in a favela abutting the Olympic Park, known as Vila Autodromo, was demolished to make way for new construction.For me the Olympics were awful, said the 53-year-old, who led a yearlong eminent-domain battle against Rio Mayor Eduardo Paes. They destroyed my life, my dream. I had my own house and I wont have it anymore.Then she added: But it (Olympics) is a very cool event. Brazilians are athletic. We like sports. I just didnt imagine that the Olympics in my country would be so expensive. The truth is I think my country was not prepared to host the Olympics. That is the great truth.Raquel Oliveira, a 25-year-old publicist, spoke while waiting for a bus on a busy road in front of the Olympic Park. She complained bus routes have been changed, reportedly a security move to make it difficult for criminal gangs to access upscale areas.In reality, it didnt change for the best because a lot of bus lines got cut, she said.dddddddddddd I have to wait for hours and I live in front of the Olympic Park. I really hope things will improve with the express-bus system or something like that.In a poll published Sunday in the Rio newspaper O Globo, 49 percent of Rio residents said they were in favor of the Olympics, and 61 percent said they would be successful. Asked what could make the games a failure, 85 percent said the lack of security.The poll size was 2,400, but the newspaper did not give the margin of error.Wolfgang Maennig, an Olympic gold-medal rower who studies the economics of the games at Hamburg University, said the Olympics usually produce a feel-good factor when they get going. But he was unsure about Rio.For 17 days, its normally a honeymoon, he said. But you never know what will happen in the case of Rio. Im not sure it will be a typical Brazilian Samba or Carnival atmosphere, but Im sure it will be better than normal, or better than now.Gustavo Nascimento, Rios venue management director, promises everything will be ready. He said a massive cleanup of the venues is set for July 15, and athletes are to have access to the venues on July 24.He also said ticket sales are slow.There are still tickets available, very, very high-quality tickets, he said.About 10,500 athletes and up to 500,000 foreigner visitors are expected for the games.Few will see the real Rio, where the poor are being pummeled by Brazils worst recession since the 1930s, soaring crime and unemployment over 10 percent. Most cant afford an Olympic ticket or a $100 souvenir soccer ball emblazoned with the Olympic logo.Australia and several countries have instructed their athletes to stay away from favelas.Mayor Eduardo Paes, who initially bragged about using the games to push pet projects, has backed away from those promises.You cant expect the Olympics to solve all the social problems here, he said. We are not a city like London or Chicago. You cant expect as much from us.IOC member Carlos Nuzman, the president of the organizing committee, has stuck to his guns, saying repeatedly: Rio will be the Olympic city with the greatest transformation. He said residents are the ones who will get the most from the games.Oliver Stuenkel, who teaches international relations at the Getulio Vargas Foundation -- a Brazilian university -- said politicians view the games as an amazing place to gain visibility and bolster their careers.If its not a catastrophe, the Olympics could provide Brazil with greater legitimacy, Stuenkel told the AP. You bring in a lot of people from around the world. You have heads of state coming in. It puts you on the map, and if youre doing well, it could have a tremendously positive impact. But it will require a lot to compensate for the negative press that is inevitably going to be out before, during and after the Olympics.Brazilians are also wary of public-works projects, which typically produce only embezzlement and empty promises.People are not against the Olympics, but most people I know are indifferent to the event, or at least very, very skeptical that it will have any tangible effect beyond simply short-term visibility, Stuenkel said.---Stephen Wade on Twitter: http://twitter.com/StephenWadeAP . His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/stephen-wade ' ' '