Olympic races postponed

13th February 2010, by Chris Gill

Ski jumping did take place on Saturday   [Vancouver2010.com]

Ski jumping did take place on Saturday [Vancouver2010.com]

Whistler’s notoriously fickle weather has forced postponement of the Men’s Olympic Downhill races due to take place at Whistler on Saturday – and of Sunday’s Women’s Super Combined event.

The opening day races were postponed until Monday 15 February because snow, fog and rain had rendered the course unfit for competition. Milder weather has meant slushy snow in parts. And the fog that has been a problem for training sessions also returned. 

The news was another blow for the Vancouver Olympics – which was marred by the death of a young luge competitor at the Whistler Sliding Centre, just hours before the official opening ceremony.

Behind Friday night’s vibrant opening celebrations lay grief. It was earlier announced that Georgian luge team member Nodar Kumaritashvili died following a crash in training. The 21-year-old lost control on the last bend of the course, travelling at 90mph, and hit a metal post. The luge competition will go ahead as scheduled but there are likely to be safety modifications – perhaps from a lower starting position in order to decrease speeds.

Other events have been running as planned, with the first medals won in speed skating, biathlon and ski jumping.

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