Monday, February 15, 2010

The Search for Canadian Gold is Over #Vancouver2010

Alexandre Bilodeau is the name that will go down in Canadian sporting folklore. After two full Olympic games on home soil he is the man who has broken the golden drought, every Valentine's Day he is bound to be remembered.

Having just missed out in the female moguls on Saturday with Jennifer Heil only taking the silver, Sunday saw Bilodeau succeed in the men's event. He finished ahead of the Canadian born Australian defending champion Dale Begg-Smith with American Bryon Wilson in third. Bilodeau and Wilson were the only finalists to attempt a double twisting back-flip off the top kicker.

But after a nervous wait while Frenchman came down the run last but sixth the Canadian dream of gold was finally over.

There was almost a shock for Canada earlier on the day in the men's biathlon sprint over 10km. At one of the standing shooting time check Jean Philippe Leguellec reached it first, but had to take a penalty loop for missing one of the targets. As it was there was a surprise when Vincent Jay of France took gold after a clean 10 targets. Wind and snow affected many of the favourites as only Jay and bronze medalist Jakov Fak of Croatia having a clear shoot. Briton Lee Jackson came in 55th good enough to qualify for the pursuit event later in the competition.

The women's 3000m speed skating saw another Canadian Kristina Groves podium for bronze. But she, German Stephanie Beckert and the rest of the field had no answer to world number one Czech Martina Sablikova, who was over 2 secs clear of the field to join that bunch of her famous compatriots and name-sakes at the top of women's sports.


The completion of the emotional men's luge competition saw a changing of the guard. Defending champion from Italy Armin Zoeggeler winner of the last three golds could only claim the bronze behind a German one-two but even David Moeller could do nothing to hang on to his younger compatriot Alex Loch. Brit A.J. Rosen sadly dropped a place on the last run having picked his way up to 15th earlier in the day, thus failing to equal Jeremy Palmer-Tomkinson's (Tara's uncle) performance in Lake Placid in 1980.

The Nordic combined the event that combines ski jumping with cross country skiing led to an exciting climax at the end of the 10km second element. Johnny Spillane of the USA who took America's first medal in the Nordic combined was leading heading to the line but was out sprinted to the line by Jason Lamy Chappuis, taking France's second Nordic gold in two hours.

The figure skating also got underway with the Pairs short programme. Chinese Xue Shen & Hongbo Zhou ended Chinese New Year in top spot, ahead of Alona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy of Germany and Yuko Kavaguti & Alexander Smirnov of Russia. The leading three had a bit of a gap over the other two Chinese pairs lying in 4th and 5th. Britains representatives Stacey Kemp & David King lie in 16th place overnight before the free programme on Monday.


Dark Lochnagar said...

Who gives a monkey's toss.

Stephen Glenn said...

Judging by the traffic reports a fair number of people. Just because it isn't your cup of tea don't put down others.

As you probably know as a sportsman I like to honour the endeavours of others, I did a similar thing during Beijing and intersperce the politics with sport qite regularly.

I care enough to write it and others care enough to read it which is good enough for me.


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