Olympic (DOC) by himeyahiya2u


Mark the day February 17, 2010 in an Olympic history book. Then hold it up
as a benchmark for future days, because it may well have been the single
greatest day the U.S. Olympic team has ever had at a Winter Olympics. No,
there was no Miracle on Ice, and Eric Heiden didn't win a jillion gold medals,
but here is the case: Never before has a U.S. team won six medals in a single
day at the Winter Games. No other country has ever won more than six. At
the 1988 Calgary Olympics, the last time a Winter Games took place in
Canada, the United States won six medals over the duration of the entire
Then consider the names who walked away with gold medals on Wednesday,
the stars who were under the most glaring spotlights not only to perform well,
but to triumph in Vancouver. If you were to name the team's flagship stars for
these Games, you'd probably list Lindsey Vonn, Shani Davis, Shaun White
and Apolo Ohno. Of those, only Ohno did not compete for a medal on
Wednesday. He advanced cleanly in both the 1,000 meters and the
5,000-meter relay. But Vonn, Davis and White took on the favorite's role
with aplomb, each delivering as fine a performance as they've had in their
In the morning, Vonn and her bum leg took on a course that was ornery
enough to propel Sweden's Anja Paerson, as good a skier as anyone over the
past decade, some 60 feet in the air. Think women aren't ski jumping in
Vancouver? It sure looked like it. Even the top skiers fought just to stay on
course. But Vonn took on the course the way she does best: she attacked. If
there was hesitation in her words during the days when she discussed the
severity of her injury leading up to the race, there was none once she stepped
onto the snow Wednesday. "This is the absolute highlight of my career,
probably my life," she said.
In the afternoon, Davis, the defending champ in the 1,000 meters, repeated
his victory against comparably tough indoor conditions. The ice in the
Richmond Oval was known to be slow to begin with, and it seemed to be
dragging legs and raising times as the sessions went on this week. Even the
Zambonis have attempted to give up. Davis drew the final pair, when the grit
accumulation on the ice surface might have slowed him. It did somewhat. He
has been winning this race by a second or more for much of the season, but
he gritted out a victory by .18 seconds on Wednesday. "What an amazing
day," Davis said of the six-medal haul. "I'm happy to be a part of that honor
... We were making history." Even when Ohno stopped after races on
Wednesday to chat with reporters about his successful advances into
subsequent rounds, he was asked if he felt satisfied about the day and said,
"Yeah, my boy, Shani, just won the thousand."
Then came White, who seemed to take jabs and body blows about how his
skills and tricks don't match up to so-and-so. Forget it. Yes, this is a dude
with a lot of hype and a lot of hair, but his second-run score of 48.4, which
came after he had already secured the gold medal with his first run, was sort
of over-the-moon, a bit like his double McTwist 1260 that still looks like it
was done with the aid of four boosters, three rockets, two trampolines and a
pogo stick.
Only four times in history has a U.S. athlete repeated as Olympic champion
in the same event. Two did so on Wednesday thanks to Davis and White
(hmm, sounds like a good ice dance team). Seth Wescott became the second
to do so just days earlier when he won the snowboardcross. Figure skater
Dick Button, a champion in 1948 and 1952, was the
"I woke up this morning and thought, 'wow, we've already got eight medals,'"
said Mike Plant, the team's chef de mission and a U.S. team member for 15
Olympics in every position from speedskater to his present post. "And then I
say, 'hey, we have a lot of star power going today.

post by Yahiya

To top