Tuesday's Highlights at the Sochi Olympics
The Associated Press
Feb. 11, 2014
TUESDAY'S HIGHLIGHTS AT THE SOCHI OLYMPICS:
FLYING TOMATO A DUD, DUDE
Shaun White failed in his quest for a third straight Olympic title, shockingly shut out of a medal for the first time since the halfpipe was introduced to the Winter Games in 1998. Instead, the gold went to Switzerland's Iouri Podladtchikov — known as "I-Pod" — who landed a jump he calls the "Yolo." Japan's Ayumu Hirano and Taku Hiraoka won silver and bronze.
CANADA CAN? DA!
Dara Howell won the gold in slopestyle skiing and teammate Kim Lamarre earned bronze to give Canada seven medals in four days of snowboarding and freestyle skiing, including three events in which they took two of the three spots on the podium.
The slogan of the Sochi Olympics is "Hot. Cool. Yours." Better make that "Hot. Hot. Hot." Temperatures climbed well above 50 degrees, exposing huge patches of green around the mountain venues and making cross-country paths soft and mushy. Sochi Olympic chief Dmitry Chernyshenko dismissed worrying over the weather, saying it wasn't warm enough to warrant tapping into Sochi's reservoirs of stockpiled snow.
WAY TO GO, NORWAY
Norway dominated on the slushy paths of the Sochi Olympics, with the men's cross-country freestyle sprint gold going to Ola Vigen Hattestad and the women's gold won by Maiken Caspersen Falla, with teammate Ingvild Flugstad Oestberg getting the silver. In addition, Tora Berger picked up silver in the women's 10-kilometer biathlon pursuit, finishing behind only Darya Domracheva of Belarus.
German athletes won big, getting the first gold medal in women's ski jumping and posting the second-largest victory margin in women's luge in Olympic history. Carina Vogt defeated favorite Sara Takanashi of Japan in the ski jump debut. And Natalie Geisenberger won the luge with a final time of 3 minutes, 19.768 seconds, 1.139 seconds better than teammate Tatjana Huefner, who got silver.
Norway became the first nation to break into double figures in total medals, with 11 — four of them gold. Canada also has four gold, and nine overall. The Netherlands is right behind with three gold and eight total, while the U.S. and host Russia are even in overall medals with seven.
Six medals will be won, starting with the women's downhill, where Maria Hoefl-Riesch of Germany is aiming for a record-equaling fourth career Olympic gold.