Sunday, February 26, 2006
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
But that's not to knock the team. They did considerably better in subsequent Olympics and other world competitions, beating other countries' more-established teams. It's claimed that Jamaica's strength in the sprinting events in the summer events translates well to bobsledding, where a quick start means a lot. Read more about them at the team's Wikipedia entry and this article on Eurosport.com; there's also this interview with Devon "Pele" Harris, a member of the first bobsled team.
Jamaica isn't at the Torino Games; their bobsled team failed to qualify for the Olympics for the first time since they started.
Friday, February 17, 2006
After seeing news coverage from the 1998 Nagano Games of Kenyan skier Philip Boit (who himself finished 92nd in Nagvajara's race this morning), Nagvajara, who is from Thailand, made it a goal to qualify for and attend the Olympics himself. At Salt Lake City in 2002, he was (as he was again this year) Thailand's lone athlete. He was lapped, and therefore disqualified, in the mass-start race in which he competed.
For these Games, his goal was to finish the 15K in under 50 minutes, which he didn't quite make.
At 48, he's one of the oldest athletes in Torino, and these will be his last Games. He has some interest in starting up a short-track speed skating program in Thailand, though.
More about Professor Nagvajara from the Philadelphia Inquirer and The Triangle, Drexel's student paper. Drexel has a page up to honour Professor Nagvajara; here's a press release the University issued last week.
Sunday, February 12, 2006
Shen and Zhao's coach, Yao Bin, was a member of the first-ever pair that China entered in international competition. Bin and his partner, Luan Bo, made their international debut at the 1980 World Championships, where they finished 15th and last, and Yao says he remembers the audience laughing at their performance. Luan and Yao were also last at the 1981 and 1982 World Championships, and last at the 1984 Sarajevo Games. Since then, however, Yao has developed a powerhouse Chinese pairs program.Laughing at the performance -- good Lord, how bad was it?
Sunday, August 29, 2004
Thursday, August 26, 2004
At a press conference Tuul answered quietly and calmly. Through an interpreter he said, "No, my time was not slow, after all you could call my run a Mongolian Olympic marathon record." That was an excellent reply I thought.Page down past the stuff about the swimmers to read this story in full.
He carried on. "And as for it being the greatest day of my life, no it isn't."
The reporters craned forward with their notebooks at the ready. Tuul said, "Up till six months ago I had no sight at all. I was a totally blind person. When I trained it was only with the aid of friends who ran with me. But a group of doctors came to my country last year to do humanitarian medical work. One doctor took a look at my eyes and asked me questions. I told him I had been unable to see since childhood. He said 'But I can fix your sight with a simple operation'. So he did the operation on me and after 20 years I could see again. So today wasn't the greatest day of my life. The best day was when I got my sight back and I saw my wife and two daughters for the first time. And they are beautiful."
Wednesday, August 25, 2004
Justin Wilcock had some kind of back stress fracture that was apparently so painful that he almost dropped out. He did all of his dives despite not being able to turn his body much at all -- the 0 score was from a "failed dive", which is what an athlete gets for not completing all of the turns/somersaults stated up front.And in another comment, a link to Justin's diary, where he writes about it. I suffer from chronic back pain myself, so boy I can empathize; actually, I'm amazed he was able to compete at all. That's character -- I couldn't have done it myself.