Celebrating last-place finishes at the Olympics. Because they're there, and you're not.

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Qualifying Rules: Alpine Skiing

Last of a series looking at just how hard it is to get to the Olympics; see previous posts on biathlon and cross country skiing, ski jumping and nordic combined, speed skating, short track, snowboarding, figure skating, freestyle skiing, curling and hockey, and bobsled, luge and skeleton.

Alpine skiing has an "ideal number" of 270 rather than a hard quota; there is, however, a quota of 22 athletes per country (14 men or 14 women, maximum, and no more than four per event). Athletes in the first 500 places in the FIS league table can qualify (subject to the country quotas, I suppose), and in the downhill, combined and Super G events, they can't have more than 120 points (as of November 2005).

There's also a basic quota of one male and one female athlete -- basic quotas are the provisions that allow countries who might not otherwise qualify to send athletes. This is why you see athletes from unexpected countries in alpine skiing events; cross-country skiing also has a basic quota. However, like cross-country skiing, you do have to be competitive in the literal sense: no more than 120 points in the downhill-ish events, no more than 140 points in the slalom-ish events.

Whatever the hell the points mean; clearly, more is worse.

Labels: , ,


Post a Comment