• 'It's unfinished business,' says local Olympic athlete hoping to compete in 2020


    PITTSBURGH - Just one year and one day from now, the 2020 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo will start, and some local athletes are hoping to compete on the world's biggest athletic stage.

    Anna Tobias is an Olympic athlete who is no stranger to hard work. It's what got her to the games in 2008 and 2012 and is driving her to go back again.

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    "I think it's a different sort of drive in that it's unfinished business," Tobias said. "I didn't do it last time, and I want to do it again."

    Tobias, who is originally from England and moved to Ohio as a child, has lived in South Fayette for the last five years. She operates a CrossFit gym and became a master's CrossFit champion last year. After stepping away for a few years, she's now drawn back to sailing and is training to qualify for Tokyo 2020.

    "When you go out there, you give it your all, not just for yourself but for the entire United States," Tobias said.

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    Tobias won individual gold in 2008, but in 2012, despite being favored, her team lost in the quarterfinals. This time, she's got a new partner and a new perspective.

    "I am not driving the boat this time," said Tobias. I'm actually crewing, so I'm in the front of the boat. So that's a huge difference in the positioning and the mentality of everything going into it."  

    Channel 11 and NBC already are working on the plan to bring you extensive coverage of the 2020 Olympics on TV and streaming. The Tokyo Games will feature 339 events in 33 sports.

    "When you get a sense of the geography where all the events will be playing out not too far from where we are on this side of the bay and not too far on the other side of the Rainbow Bridge," said NBC's Mike Tirico. "It kind of feels like Pittsburgh with all the beautiful bridges here."

    Since Tokyo is 13 hours ahead of Pittsburgh, you'll see all the best action live in prime time.

    "There's great competition in those sports that perhaps we don't pay much attention to in the intervening four years because we're watching if the Pens can make a cup run, or if the Pirates can get back to the playoffs or if the Steelers can make a run to the Super Powl," Tirico said. 

    Baseball and softball are back in 2020, and there will be new sports, including climbing, karate, surfing and skateboarding.

    Tobias is just one of several athletes from our area we're keeping our eyes on as we lead up to the games. Right now, she's traveling across the world to train and race but said it's the support here in Pittsburgh that helps to keep her focused on her goals.

    "Sailing is definitely not a big sport here in Pittsburgh, but so many people are interested and follow and send messages all the time," Tobias said. "It's really great."


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