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Nothing But Net

Sports training no longer begins and ends in a rancid weight room, on a blistering track, or under the glare of an attentive coach. Today, smart athletes are turning to the Web to expand their skills and assess the competition.

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It’s difficult to slap a high five, share a celebratory beer, or make a harmless $10 bet with your computer, but that doesn’t stop thousands of avid sports fans from trying. As stellar Web sites like ESPN.com, Quokka, and CNN Sports Illustrated are demonstrating, sometimes the Web is the next best thing to box seats. And always cheaper.

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For those sports fans who also make a living catching fly balls, ascending Half Dome, or landing 360s on an X Games halfpipe, the Web is quickly becoming a valuable resource as well. Athletes across the spectrum are logging on and checking out competition results, training tips, and discussion forums on a wide variety of sports sites ranging from Performance Ski and Surf to NASCAR Online, and Triathlete Online to Skateboarding.com.

Read on to learn where the fastest, strongest, and most daring spend their digital time.

Tony Stewart

NASCAR driver

Sondra Van Ert
Snowboarder

Tony Hawk
Skateboarder

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Heather Fuhr
Ironman competitor

Tara Hamilton
Wakeboarder