Sports Briefs

Posted: Sunday, December 28, 2003

Hakkinen places 14th at World Cup

Kasilof's Jay Hakkinen placed 14th in the men's 20-kilometer race Dec. 18 at a World Cup race in Osrblie, Slovakia. It was his best finish since his 13th at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games.

A week before, Hakkinen placed a disappointing 72nd in a 10-kilometer sprint at Hochfilzen, Austria. He had six shooting penalties, and discovered the forestock on his rifle was broken. He got that fixed and had just one penalty during his 14th-place finish. In that race, Hakkinen was 2 minutes, 38.5 seconds behind France's Raphael Poiree, who toured the course in 45:46.5, with no penalties.

The performance on Dec. 18 shows Hakkinen is back in form after a bout with tonsillitis threw off his entire season last year.

Team Alaska tryouts scheduled

Arctic Winter Games Team Alaska announces tryouts in several sports for the 2004 Arctic Winter Games, scheduled for February 28 through March 6, 2004 in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada, part of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo.

The cross country skiing portion of Team Alaska 2004 will be selected based upon results in the six-race Besh Cup Junior Olympic Qualifying series. The first two races were held Dec. 20 and 21. The third and fourth races will be held on the Kenai Peninsula in Homer on Jan. 24 and 25, and the final two events will be held in the Interior, in Salcha and Fairbanks, on Feb. 7 and 8. Results in a skier's best four of six races will count toward selection.

A total of 24 athletes, four boys and four girls in each of three age-classes, will be selected for the team. Age classes are Junior/J1 (born 1986-1987), Juvenile/J2 (born 1988-1989), Midget/J3 (born 1990-1991). At the Games, skiers will compete in a sprint, two individual events, and a relay.

For more information regarding selection, please go to the website for

Cross Country Alaska, the state governing body for cross country skiing, at Head coach for the team is Tom Grenier of Anchorage. Coaches are selected by the Cross Country Alaska Competition Committee.

Tryouts for the Alaska Table Tennis team for the 2004 Arctic Winter Games will be held Jan. 10, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. at the Fairview Recreation Center, 1121 East 10th Avenue, Anchorage. There is an entry fee of $25 per person. For more information contact Bob Janes (phone 907-465-2080, e-mail: or Karl Augstad (e-mail:

The Table Tennis team will consist of eight competitors, two boys and two girls in each of two age groups. The Junior Class is for competitors born in 1986 and later, and the Juvenile Class is for competitors born in 1989 and later.

At a statewide competition hosted by the Anchorage Figure Skating Club, eight figure skaters were selected to represent Alaska at the 2004 Games in four different classes, Ladies 1, Ladies 2, Ladies 3 and Ladies 4. Jessica Turner of Soldotna was selected in the Ladies 1 competition.

The Arctic Winter Games is an international, biennial celebration of youth, sport and culture. The first Arctic Winter Games was held in 1970 in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. Approximately 2,000 athletes, coaches, team staff and officials will participate in the 2004 Games. Participating delegations include Alaska, Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Alberta North, Nunavik (Northern Quebec), Greenland, Magadan (Russia), Yamal (Russia), and Samiland (comprised of the Lapp peoples of Norway, Sweden and Finland). The 2006 Games will be hosted in Alaska by the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

Competition will be held in alpine skiing, badminton, basketball, biathlon, cross country skiing, Dene games, dog mushing, figure skating, gymnastics, ice hockey, indoor soccer, Inuit games, short-track speedskating, snowboarding, snowshoe biathlon, snowshoeing, table tennis, volleyball and wrestling. In addition, a cultural delegation will perform at the Games.

Steinbrenner faints, alert when taken to hospital

SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner fainted Saturday at a memorial service for football great Otto Graham and was hospitalized in stable condition, an emergency official said.

''Right now, he's fine,'' Paul Dezzi of the Sarasota County Fire Department told The Associated Press.

''He fainted. When we arrived, he was alert and oriented. He was very talkative in the ambulance,'' he said. ''He was stable.''

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