AS we all know only too well, these games started off in the worst possible way.
Georgian Luger Nodar Kumaritashvili was killed during a last minute training run just hours before the opening ceremony. As a result the starting gates were altered to reduce speeds and all the Lugers wore a black mark on their helmets as a mark of respect.Canada set out to “Own the Podium” during their games, but they had to wait until day three to get their first ever gold on home soil in either the summer or winter games. Alexandre Bilodeau secured his place in Canadian sporting folklore when he triumphed in the men’s Moguls competition. The hosts went on to claim a record 14 gold medals, topping the medals table. They reached this historic landmark when they took gold in the one event they wanted to win above all others, the men’s Ice Hockey competition. The gold was made more valuable to them because it was their old enemy the USA who they beat 3-2 in the final in overtime.
My award for the most spectacular crash of the games goes to Swedish skier Anya Paerson for her “big one” in the women’s Downhill. She mistimed a jump near the end of her run and was launched into the air, travelling 60-meters (200ft). She recovered to win bronze in the Super Combined!
In men’s skiing, Didier Défago of Switzerland won the blue-ribbon event (men’s Downhill), and Bode Miller of America finally won an Olympic gold in the Combined.
The lack of snow which made it seem like the Spring Olympics didn’t take away any of the drama, especially in the new sport of Ski-Cross. With thrills and spills aplenty, we will defiantly be seeing a lot more of it in the future.
One of the most eye-popping moments of the games was when American Snowboarding legend Shaun White took gold by performing a “Double McTwist 1260” or “The Tomahawk” in the final of the men’s Halfpipe.
In Ski Jumping, Swiss legend Simon Ammann won both the normal and large hill competitions. Exactly as he did in Salt Lake City in 2002.
Figure skater Joannie Rochette of the host nation bravely skated through the grief of losing her mother just two days before to clinch a bronze medal.
By the way, is it just me or did nobody at these games get caught cheating or was caught doping? If that is the case, it is fantastic news. 🙂
And finally (but most importantly), Britain’s Amy Williams became Olympic Champion in the women’s Skeleton. This was our only medal of the games, but at least it was gold. I was jumping all around the front room at well past midnight when she won.Overall, these games will be classed as a disappointment for Team GB. We set out to get between three and five medals and only came away with one. But remember, we are not a country that sets winter sports that highly on its sporting list. But if we want to come way from Sochi in 2014 with more medals, more money should be given to the sports we are more likely to do well in. With a bit more cash, our Curlers and sliders may be higher up the rankings. Now I don’t want to sound nasty but in order for the above mentioned to happen, perhaps the money needs to be redirected from the Alpine Skiing programme? Britain celebrating coming in the top 30 just seems a bit silly to me.
However, when it comes to my final athlete, I am going to make an exception. Kwame Nkrumah-Acheampong of Ghana, AKA “The Snow Leopard” who started the men’s Slalom 102nd and last, finished in 47th place, over 43 seconds behind the winner. But more importantly, he wasn’t last!“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not the winning but taking part.”
Baron Pierre de Coubertin, founder of the modern Olympics.
WELL DONE TO YOU ALL! And thank-you!
1. Canada = 14 golds – 7 silvers – 5 bronzes
2. Germany = 10-13-7
3. U.S.A. = 9-15-13
4. Norway = 9-8-6
5. South Korea = 6-6-2
6. Switzerland = 6-0-3
7. China & Sweden= 5-2-4
9. Austria = 4-6-6
10. Netherlands = 4-1-3
19. Great Britain = 1-0-0