Karsten Everlasting

Belorussia’s Ekaterina Karsten is proving that age may only be a number after all. On June 2, the two-time Olympic singles champion celebrated her 45th birthday. Less than a week earlier, she fought her way to within a half second of the European championship in the women’s single. The winner—Victoria Thornley of Great Britain—is incredibly nearly 15 years her junior. That age gap is nothing new for Karsten, who made her senior team debut with the Soviet Union in 1991, and apart from 1998 when she took a year off to give birth, has raced internationally every year since.