Posts Tagged ‘extreme sports’

Barrio died while base jumping at an air show in Spain
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Spanish television chef, Dario Barrio, has died after his parachute failed to open during a wing suit jump on Friday.

Barrio, who was popular in Spain for his cookery programme “Everyone against the Chef”, died after colliding with a rock face during a base jump for the “International Air Festival” in Sierra Segura mountain range in Jaen Province Spain.

The tragic final moments of Barrio’s life were captured on camera by a nearby spectator.

According to reports, Barrio died because of a malfunction with his parachute.

However, these have not been confirmed.

He was announced dead at the scene after attempts were made by paramedics to revive the 42-year-old.

As a result of Barrio’s death, it has been decided by organisers that all of the skydiving events at the festival should be suspended.

The festival organisers said that they “deeply regretted” Barrio’s death and would try to help to support his family.

Barrio was a favourite on Spanish television, but had also worked in restaurants across the world including cities such as Zurich and London.

His death will comes as a massive shock and tributes have flooded in across social media sites.

Paco Roncero, a fellow chef and close friend of Barrio, said on Twitter that he was struggling to cope with the “loss of a great friend.”

He leaves behind two children.

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Leading results after the sixth stage of the Criterium du Dauphine, the 178.5km from Grenoble to Poisy on Friday.


1. Jan Bakelants (BEL/OPQ) 4hr 07min 20sec, 2. Lieuwe Westra (NED/AST) s.t., 3. Zdenek Stybar (CZE/OPQ) at 24secs, 4. Pim Ligthart (NED/LTB) s.t., 5. Jens Keukeleire (BEL/ORI) s.t., 6. Jens Voigt (GER/TRE) s.t., 7. Maciej Bodnar (POL/CAN) s.t., 8. Bram Tankink (NED/BKN) s.t., 9. Valerio Conti (ITA/LAM) s.t., 10. Julien Simon (FRA/COF) s.t.

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X Games Austin 2014 - June 5, 2014It was hot. It was sunny. It was action-packed.

Austin pretty much had it all for X Games fans and athletes alike, which might be why after 11 years the ESPN extreme sports spectacular up and moved from Los Angeles for a change of scenery.  The storylines were good ones, the backdrop was picturesque and the athletes were some of the best in recent memory – it certainly made for some fantastic TV over the weekend.

This year’s X Games featured five sports – some of which had several disciplines – with 20 medal events in skateboarding, motocross, BMX, RallyCross and Stadium SUPER Trucks.  We decided to take a look back at the best, and the worst, of each sport from Austin – do you agree?

Best Skateboarding Moment 

Nyjah Huston Sets Record in Skateboard Street

X Games Austin 2014 - June 5, 2014The X Games closed with a bang on Sunday when 19-year-old Nyjah Huston took home his sixth career Skateboard Street win, in record-setting fashion.  The California phenom posted the highest score ever at an X Games Skateboard Street final, further proving he’s one of the best in the sport.

His run included a switch 50-50 down an eight-stair rail, Cab720 backside lipslide down a rail and a noseblunt slide on the Jersey barrier.  Oh, and Huston did it all in style, wearing a camouflage tank top with an American flag strewn across the chest.

Worst Skateboarding Moment – Bucky Lasek Unable to Produce in Skateboard Vert

Bucky Lasek was certainly one of the favorites going into Thursday’s Skateboarding Vert event.  Lasek, 41, won all four global X Games vert events last year but was still nursing an elbow injury.  Donning a white shirt with the phrase “I’m hurt not old” written on it, Lasek was unable to get anything going on his first run, falling about halfway through.  The second run wouldn’t end any better.

Just a few seconds in, Lasek tried his signature move, the 180-deree frontside Cab Heelflip but it was evident that his arm was still in pain as he couldn’t grab the board the way he wanted and was forced to bail on the trick.  Lasek finished in last with a score of 21.33 – but he gets points for trying.

Best BMX Moment

Jamie Bestwick Does It… Again

X Games Austin 2014 - June 5, 2014There were a few great BMX moments this weekend, but we just can’t argue with what JamieBestwick has continued to accomplish.  The British-born rider once again wrote his name in the X Games record books, winning BMX Vert for the ninth time in a row – a feat that hasn’t been duplicated in any sport.

With the amazing backdrop of the capital building, the 42-year-old wowed the crowd on his last run and finished with a final score of 92.66 – walking away with more hardware and admitting to once again be elated.  Though Bestwick did admit to ESPN that he awaits the day when he meets his match, he continues to see his success as an inspiration to riders everywhere.

Worst BMX Moment – Chad Kagy falters in BMX Big Air Final

It was a difficult weekend for Chad Kagy.  After a disappointing seventh place finish in BMX Vert, the 35-year-old looked to rebound in Big Air, an event he took gold in last year at Munich.  While Kagy admitted he had been looking forward to Saturday’s event for months, it didn’t go his way either, finishing again in seventh with a score of 79.33.  Both he and Steve McCann – the favorites – failed to medal.

Kagy was running on little sleep and had plenty on his mind this past weekend, after the birth of his daughter early last week, so we can totally understand how it happened.  I’m sure he would gladly take the trade off of a new child for no medals in Austin – like he doesn’t have 15 X Games medals already.

Best Moto Moment

Ronnie Renner Steps Up Big

Going into Friday, Ronnie Renner had won the Moto X Step Up five times, including a record setting 47-foot jump at Los Angeles in 2012.  Though he didn’t come close to that mark in Austin, Renner took home his sixth gold in the event with a jump of 34 feet.  At 33.50 feet, Bryce Hudson, the second place finisher, wasn’t able to reach the height in his two attempts.

Renner, 36, continues to add to his X Games legacy, one that makes him one of the best Moto X riders to ever compete.  11 medals and still going strong – let’s see if he can make it three in a row next year.

Worst Moto Moment – Beau Bamburg’s Last Place Finish

We’re going to blame the fans on this one.  The Moto X Best Whip was chosen by the fans and while Tom Parsons earned 33-percent of the vote, Beau Bamburg finished with just seven-percent.  He might not have had what it took to win, but last place was definitely a bit of a stretch.

He’s never earned an X Games medal in 11 years of competition – come on, America.

Best RallyCross Moment

Lasek Finally Medals

For the last two years, Lasek has tried his luck at RallyCross, even appearing on an episode of Top Gear, but never finished better than 11.  That came to an end this weekend, when the Subaru driver pushed his orange and white car past crowd favorite Travis Pastrana, among others, to earn X Games silver.  Lasek has made RallyCross a priority as of recently and could look to fully transition to the sport as he gets older.

Sure, he might have finished almost five seconds behind the winner, but it was a big moment of Lasek’s career and proved that he’s able to compete with some of racing’s best drivers.

Worst RallyCross Moment – Tanner Foust Rolls Out

Celebrities Visit Tanner Foust was one of the favorites heading into Saturday’s race, having seven medals under his belt, including three gold medals – but it was a short day for the Top Gear co-star.  Just seconds into the preliminary race, Foust took a turn too tight and flipped his Rockstar vehicle.

Sitting there, upside-down, for a moment, Foust was clearly disappointed but wanted to flip it over and further compete in the competition.  It wasn’t that easy, however.  Until next year, Foust.

Best Stadium SUPER Trucks Moment

Apdaly Lopez Walks Away with Gold

X Games Austin 2014 - June 8, 2014Did you really think we’d pick something else?  Apdaly Lopez took home the first ever X Games gold medal in Stadium SUPER Trucks, finishing with a time of 27:29.567.  The 19-year-old, who hails from Mexico, was a darkhorse in the race and became the first Mexican male to win a gold medal.

Plus he was one of the only trucks to finish without a scratch on it.

Worst Stadium SUPER Trucks Moment – Bobby Runyan, Jr. Finishes in Last after Crash

Last place was not what Bobby Runyan, Jr. expected heading into Sunday’s race.  However, Runyan was right with the pack until Lap 4, when he barrel-rolled off the side of a banked jump on the course, which led to a red flag and an abrupt pause in the race.

While there were several rough moments in the event, Runyan seem poised for a medal and for the disappointment to happen so quickly, we couldn’t help but call it the worst moment.

Ed Miller is a contributor for CraveOnline Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @PhillyEdMiller or “like” CraveOnline Sports on Facebook.

Photo Credit: ESPN


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Don your flippers and take a deep breath for here is a ranking of the best places to dive in the Middle East. (Shutterstock)

Whether you are a Scuba diving fanatic in the midst of a bullion escapade or an avid coral reef explorer, read on for a bite sized list of the most colorful places to enjoy the sea in the Middle East.

Scuba Diving is considered the apotheosis of leisure activities for expats living in the Middle Eastern region – sun, sand and sea all merge into one in an enjoyable day out for the more adventurous among us.

Seeing as summer is right around the corner, it is high time to book a sea-faring holiday to experience the joys of snorkeling with stingrays, wreck diving and skimming caverns for, believe it or not, treasure.

Organizing a scuba-diving holiday can be daunting, where do you go? Can you trust the advertising campaigns promising you a bursting coral reef packed with wildlife? Or, are you more likely to find a polluted swamp when you arrive?

Fear not, don your flippers and take a deep breath for here is a ranking of the best places to dive in the Middle East.

El-Gouna, Egypt

It’s one of the many getaways you are likely find in the beautiful Red Sea district.

Situated north of Hurghada – another radiant city on the red seaside, “The Lagoon” is a renowned diving spot for all those who pursue its glory with a moniker “Ship Graveyard.” Its reef is home to a World War Two British navy ship, SS Thistlegorm, which was destroyed by two German bombers.

Visitors are privy to a number of ferry rides to and from the prime scene. Contrary to known hubs like Sharm el-Sheikh, it’s warm in the winter, mildly hot in summer and espouses environmental sustainability practices to conserve marine life.

There’s plenty of huts and bungalows to stay in once you arrive, so you can nonchalantly tick off “swinging on a banana hammock.” If you’re keen on exploring a diverse number of tropical species, then you’re in the right place.

Al-Sawadi, Oman

Ennobled as the crown jewel of diving in the Gulf, Al-Sawadi is the epitome of magnificent natural reserves in the Daymaniyat Islands.

Pristine water conditions and abundant marine life make Oman the perfect go-to setting for enthusiasts from all over the world. You’ll get to swim with Whale Sharks, Hawksbill turtles and tangerine colored seahorses – breathtaking.

You can also try out night diving, which is delightfull, especially if you share an unfettered love of the ocean and its habitats. The good thing is the water temperature tends to fluctuate up to thirty degrees Celsius in the summer. You also have a choice of camping outdoor on the beach or staying in a comfortable hotel – like the al-Sawadi Beach Resort. The coast line is situated about an hour away from Muscat, so make sure your booking has a minimum of two days to fully enjoy a relaxed swim.

Fethiye, Turkey

Aside from sampling their delicious kebabs and dolma, you will get to marvel at the sparkling array of colorful sponges, corals and hidden caves which are home to octopuses. The water is crystal-clear and doesn’t swoosh aggressively as there’s barely any current.

A lot of people tend to visit Afkule Wall, home to the Moray eels, which is full of rare and interesting marine species. One of the most underrated spots on the list, the government does not extoll the virtues of Fethiye as much as it deserves.

Nonetheless, the outskirts boast a three mile radius packed with motels. It’s very hot and dry during summer season with averages up to 34 degrees Celsius, but the ethereal city is worth the beads of sweat. At the end of the day, amateur or pro, this ancient city will unravel the Jacques Cousteau in you.
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Top ten: The best cycling routes in France

The iconic corkscrew ascent from Bourg d’Oisans to Alpe d’Huez is such a stunning ride that thousands of cyclists. Photo:

Cycling has never been so popular among tourists visiting France, according to Natasha Wright, who runs the bike rental and delivery service with her husband Neville.

“Since we launched in 2006 we have seen an increase in inquiries and bookings each year,” Wright tells The Local. “The fact that cycling has featured so much on TV and in the media has definitely helped.”

In particular, the fact that there have been two consecutive British winners of the Tour de France – Bradley Wiggins in 2012 and Chris Froome in 2013 – has raised awareness of cycling among British tourists, she says.

But aside from the media attention focused on the sport, families are increasingly looking for inexpensive activities which appeal to all ages.

Wright, who is a mother of three, says she would much rather take her children on a cycling trip than to a theme park, which can often be expensive.

“People are always looking for better value things to do, and also things to do as a family that children, teenagers and adults can all enjoy.

“You can do a different route every day, and go out in all types of weather.”

Wright also considers cycling to be safer in France than in her native England.

“Since we moved to France, I’ve given my children a lot more freedom outside on their bikes than I would in the UK because it’s safer – cars definitely give cyclists more leeway.”

Although the majority of her customers are English-speaking – including many Americans, Irish, British and Australians – cycling also appeals to many northern European tourists, especially the Norwegians and the Dutch.

Wright, who is based just south of Cognac, says her favourite place to cycle is in the south west of France.

“The south west may not have much to offer to a hardcore racer, but it’s perfect for the average cyclist. You’ve got beaches, fields, vineyards – pretty much everything that people imagine when they think of France.”

Founded in 2006, Bike Hire Direct offers bike rental and delivery in the south-western Charente, Charente-Maritime, Dordogne, Vienne and Haute-Vienne departments of France. Click here for more information.

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SHE’S just nine years old, but NSW tween Sabre Norris is already landing some huge skateboarding tricks and attracting the attention of some huge stars.

Footage of the Newcastle youngster landing her first 540 rotation on her local skate ramp has gone global, with a clip posted on YouTube already amassing more than 735,000 views.

The video shows Sabre never giving up as she repeatedly falls as she tries to land the move.

Finally she sticks the landing on the one-and-a-half turn trick, letting out a squeal of delight as she lands.

“I can’t believe it!” she screams.


Overjoyed ... Sabre Norris after landing the 540.

Overjoyed … Sabre Norris after landing the 540. Source: YouTube


Sabre, who’s been skateboarding for three years, says she took up the sport because she wasn’t allowed to get a bike due to lack of space at home.

“I started from rolling down my dad’s business car park. My favorite (sic) trick is a 540,” she says in the video’s description.

“I watched Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins do it on the internet, and I just had to do it. That was my 75th attempt of the day. Every time I tried one and didn’t land it I put a rock on the table. It ended up being my 75th rock.”

Sabre says she threw in some other tricks during the day too, including some attempted 720s.

“My goal is to do 100 of them before this Saturday. I’m up to 75. I still can’t ride a bike, but I can do a 540.”


Awesome moves ... Sabre in mid-air during the trick.

Awesome moves … Sabre in mid-air during the trick. Source: YouTube


Her impressive moves attracted the attention of some big-name extreme sports stars, with Nitro Circus rider Travis Pastrana, the husband of Sabre’s idol Lyn-Z Adams Hawkins, inviting her to the group’s Sydney show last Saturday.

And the daughter of Newcastle swimming great Justin Norris has her sights set on even bigger things.

She dreams of winning Olympic gold medal in skateboarding in 2020 and a career as a professional surfer, The Advocate reports.

“I can’t wait until the Olympics in 2020,’’ she told The Advocate.

‘‘My dad won a medal at the Olympics and I’d like to win one as well.’’

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The Argus: Peter Charnaud, left, and Richard Dowdeswell with the special bikes

Peter Charnaud, left, and Richard Dowdeswell with the special bikes

TWO cycling enthusiasts have proven their passion in a unique way – by making their very own road and mountain bikes out of wood and bamboo.

While other road bikes have been constructed from wood, the full-suspension mountain bike is thought to be a world first.

Brainchild of the invention, Peter Charnaud, of Southwick, said his motivation behind the creation was the desire to “do something different”.

In addition to the mountain bike, Mr Charnaud also made a road bike out of the same wood.

The other cycle fanatic John Lewis, of Findon, constructed his “road hybrid” bike from bamboo grown in Fittleworth, near Chichester.

Mr Charnaud, 56, said: “They’re not the easiest things to make, but then again it’s rewarding to make and to use wood which has at one time been growing and living.

“They are practical but aesthetically pleasing.”

He added: “I usually use London Plane wood, which is what they used in the war to build aeroplanes – it’s very strong wood with a lovely grain to it – then either walnut or elm which is dark but strong.”

The bikes took around one month to make from used parts from bicycle shop Cyclelife Shoreham.

“I was telling a customer about the bamboo bike and Mr Charnaud happened to be there. He brought down his road bike and it was a work of art.

“He had even matched the grain on both sides of the bike, which is what they do with the wood panelling for Bentley interiors.”

“It’s the ultimate eco-friendly recycling.”

The bamboo bike is currently on display in the shop in Kingston Broadway and Mr Dowdeswell hopes to have the mountain bike on display from mid-June. See for more images.



Angela Naeth. Photo: Richard Sibbold/Triathlon Magazine Canada

Pro Triathlete Angela Naeth. Photo: Richard Sibbold/Triathlon Magazine Canada

Canadians pros cleaned up in Kona today. Brent McMahon and Angela Naeth won Ironman 70.3 Hawaii. McMahon dusted the field in a blazing fast time of 3:59:35 almost eight minutes ahead of second place finisher and former world champ Craig Alexander. It appears Alexander has been disqualified which puts McMahon almost 20 minutes ahead of Benjamin Williams who moves from third in the rankings to second in 4:18:36. Karl Bordine was officially third in 4:22:08.

While the top women swam and rode pretty close in times, Naeth pulled away on the run to finish in 4:30: 53 while Melanie McQuaid was third just four minutes behind and Magalie Tisseyre was 4th in 4:38:22. Rounding out the Canadian sweep was Karen Thibodeau in 6th in a time of 4:41:22.

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Low carb high fat ketogenic diet can work well for endurance sports, says Tim Noakes

Kim, Loccisano/Getty Images

Carb-loading is so synonymous with endurance sports it may come as a shock to learn it’s not optimal for performance.

Sports science expert Dr. Tim Noakes said endurance athletes can perform as well as — or better than — those following a high-carb diet.

Low-Carb Diets Enhance Weight Loss and Fat Oxidation

According to Noakes, a physician and professor at the University of Cape Town in South Africa, athletes who become adapted to a low-carb diet can use fat as fuel instead of relying on huge amounts of pro-inflammatory carbohydrates.

“Studies of elite athletes chronically adapted to low-carbohydrate diets have uncovered one unexpected finding — their extraordinary ability to produce energy at very high rates purely from the oxidation of fat,” Noakes wrote in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.

Noakes and his colleagues, Drs. Jeff Volek and Stephen Phinney, said the field of low-carb sports performance is underinvestigated and in need of further exploration. Meanwhile, in 9 of 11 low-carb performance studies, a low-carb diet was better than, or just as effective as, a high-carb diet for endurance performance.

Drs. Volek and Phinney are the co-authors of The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living, widely considered a seminal LCHF diet book.

Ironman Triathlete Followed a Ketogenic Diet

Drs. Noakes, Volek and Phinney aren’t the only proponents of low-carb diets for endurance athletes. Fitness expert Ben Greenfield trained for the 2013 Ironman Triathlon World Championships by following the LCHF ketogenic diet, and completed the epic endurance race in an impressive 9:59:26.

The Ironman triathlon consists of a 2.4-mile swim followed by a 112-mile bike ride and then a 26.2-mile marathon, done in that order without a break. Greenfield’s breakfast the morning of the Ironman was a half-stick of butter, two shots of MCT oil, and a cup of coffee — a stark contrast to the vats of pasta most endurance athletes inhale before a race.

Ben discussed his ketogenic diet experiment on a podcast with fitness trainer Sam Feltham (see video). Feltham himself made headlines after experimenting with a 5,000-calorie-a-day diet that underscored the weight-loss benefits of eating more fat.

When Sam followed a low-fat, high-carb diet for three weeks, he gained 16 pounds and almost 4 inches in his belly. Surprisingly, when Feltham ate a low-carb, high-fat (LCHF) diet for three weeks, he gained only 2 pounds but lost 1 inch from his midsection.

Greenfield joins a growing number of endurance athletes who are sold on the health benefits of a high-fat diet for endurance training. Ben previously followed a high-carb diet but switched after realizing that too many carbs fuel inflammation, which can lead to heart disease, Alzheimer’s, obesity, diabetes, and cancer.

“Two years ago, I came across research about pancreatic fatigue and failure, loss of insulin-cell receptor sensitivity, and surges in blood glucose leading to inflammation,” said Greenfield, author of Beyond Training. Greenfield no longer follows the ketogenic diet, but advocates consuming plenty of healthy fats.

Weight-Loss Expert: Eat Fat and Get Thin

Meanwhile, recent scientific research and reports suggest that unprocessed saturated fat is good for you and can protect against heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.

Weight loss expert Dr. Eric Westman, director of the Duke University Obesity Clinic, has helped hundreds of morbidly obese people lose thousands of pounds on the LCHF ketogenic and Atkins diets. He said eating more unprocessed fat can enhance weight loss and improve health across the board.

“I tell my patients not to fear the fat,” said Dr. Westman, author of New Atkins for a New You. “Eat lots of fat. Fat makes you feel full. There’s no problem with fat. In fact, saturated fat — the fat that we’ve been taught not to eat — raises your good cholesterol best of all the foods you can eat.”

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Comrades Marathon 2014 Results: Men and Women's Top Finishers

Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Bongmusa Mthembu was crowned 2014 Comrades Marathon champion on Sunday. The South African ran a time of five hours, 28 minutes and 34 seconds to triumph in front of a home crowd.

The official Comrades Marathon Twitter account was on hand to capture the first-place finisher’s crowning moment, with countryman Ludwick Mamabolo finishing second and Gift Kelehe in third:


Mthembu was four minutes and 41 seconds faster than nearest rivalMamabolo, clocking in with an average time of three minutes and 41 seconds per kilometre.

Elena Nurgalieva had the opportunity to record her ninth victory in the 89-kilometre ultramarathon, but she dropped off the leading pace with barely six kilometres remaining, giving way to NedbankInternational runner Eleanor Greenwood.


2014 Comrades Marathon Men’s Top 10 Finishers
Position Name Nationality Time
1 Bongmusa Mthembu South Africa 5:28:34
2 Ludwick Mamabolo South Africa +4:41
3 Gift Kelehe South Africa +6:06
4 Stephen Muzhingi Zimbabwe +6:45
5 Rufus Photo South Africa +6:57
6 Mncedisi Mkhize South Africa +7:33
7 Jonas Buud Sweden +9:44
8 Manoko William Mokwalakwala South Africa +10:56
9 Prodigal Khumalo Zimbabwe +11:03
10 Latudi Makofane South Africa +12:08


Greenwood finished atop the women’s pile with a time of six hours, 18 minutes and 15 seconds. As East Coast Radio’s Andre Bloem points out, the result represents a break in the Nurgalieva hold over the largest ultramarathon in the world:



Had Elena, the more successful of the Nurgalieva twins, been able to prevail, the Russian would have tied Bruce Fordyce’s nine race wins—five more than any other woman has ever managed:



As it is, however, she misjudged her run and blew up short of the finish line, slipping to Greenwood’s perseverance at a crucial juncture in the course.



2014 Comrades Marathon Women’s Top 10 Finishers
Position Name Nationality Time
1 Eleanor Greenwood Great Britain 6:18:15
2 Elena Nurgalieva Russia +5:04
3 Olesya Nurgalieva Russia +6:36
4 Irina Antropova South Africa +15:53
5 Camille Herron United States +28:48
6 Jo Meek Great Britain +33:29
7 Caroline Wostmann South Africa +37:40
8 Frida Sodermark Sweden +39:19
9 Zola Budd Pieterse South Africa +42:32
10 Martinique Potgieter South Africa +44:35


While Nurgalieva is well-versed in the ways of winning under the South African sun, this was a maiden championship for Mthembu, presenting two quite opposite modes of victors in this year’s event.

Mthembu placed third in the 2010 Comrades Marathon, and this year’s run will be remembered as a moment of realisation for all his past attempts in taking home the biggest prize at stake.

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