The torch is lit for Sochi
The athletes are what really matters when it comes to the Sochi Winter Olympics
Bobby Danger Jones
The XXII Winter Olympic Games should be celebrated for the games, not condemned for the issues surrounding them. Canada is predicted to win over 30 medals and finish right behind our neighbors to the south. So with all the success from 2010, and the potential for 2014 — let’s stop complaining and back our athletes up.
The reading week most post secondary students are having will offer the opportunity to watch the games (between reading of course), and take in a variety of competition unparalleled in the world. So keep an eye on how Canada is doing and embrace the moments our athletes win medals, and hopefully maintain our reputation as one of the top winter sport countries in the world.
Let’s take a look at Canada’s success so far.
Dufour-Lapointe Sisters (Gold, Silver)
It didn’t take long for Canada to strike gold and silver in Sochi, but the way it happened is something special. Justine, Chloe and Maxime are the three Dufour-Lapointe sisters, who represented Canada in women’s moguls Feb. 8. Two sisters walked away with gold and silver and a third made it to the second-last round of 12 skiers, which are amazing achievements. Justine and Chloe now join French skiers Marieele and Christine Goitschel, and Austrian lugers Doris and Angelika Neuner, on the short list of sisters to win Olympic gold and silver in the same event.
Men’s and Women’s Ice Dance Free Skate (Silver)
Canada headed into the final day of competition Feb 9, when the men’s, women’s and ice dance free skate were contested. Kevin Reynolds, known for his ability to execute complex jumps with ease, landed three quads with near-perfect precision in the team men’s free skate. His Russian counterpart, the veteran Evgeny Plushenko, only attempted one quad securing Canada the silver.
Men’s Ski Slopestyle (Bronze)
Mark McMorris of Regina won bronze Feb. 8 in the men’s snowboard slopestyle event on Day 1 of the games. McMorris was a gold-medal favourite leading up to the Games before he suffered a setback when he fractured a rib two weeks ago at the X-Games in Aspen, Colo. A disappointing qualifying round in Sochi forced him to compete in the semifinal earlier Saturday in order to earn a spot in the final.
McMorris fell on the landing of his final jump in the opening run of the final and scored 33.75 points. He needed a strong second run to land on the podium, and the 20-year-old delivered with a score of 88.75.
Men’s 1500 m Short Track (Gold)
Charles Hamelin has now got himself three gold medals as of Feb. 10. That lifts the short-track speed skater into a tie with his idol, Mark Gagnon, as the most golden clad Canadian Olympian ever in individual events. The 29-year-old from Montreal did it the afternoon of Feb. 10 in his least dominant event.
Men’s Freestyle Skiing (Gold)
Concordia student Alexandre Bilodeau made history at the Winter Games when he became the first person ever to successfully defend an Olympics title in the moguls competition.
The 26-year-old, who studies accounting at the John Molson School of Business, went all out during the six-man final, executing a near-flawless run and earning Canada’s third gold medal at the 2014 Games with a score.
Women’s Ski Slopestyle (Gold, Bronze)
Canada’s Dara Howell won the gold medal and Kim Lamarre took bronze in the women’s ski slopestyle event Feb. 11.
Howell, 19, of Huntsville, Ont., posted a stellar score of 94.2 to take a commanding lead after the first of two final runs, and it held up.
Lamarre, from Quebec City, crashed on her first run and needed a score higher than 77.0 to win a medal. The 25-year-old put it all on the line in her second run and delivered, scoring 85.0 to win the bronze.