I hear quite a few people cracking on the Winter Olympics, as if the Winter events are not real sports or are fru-fru. However, as the horrific event of earlier today demonstrates (I write this the day of the opening) there is very real danger not just to Olympic participant’s limbs but to their lives as well.
I can think of only one set of events in the summer games that present the significant danger to the participants and that is the bicycling events. I suppose platform diving also presents significant danger to the divers. However, luge, bobsled, ski jumping, downhill skiing (and that counts super-g and giant slalom events as well as downhill), and skating all present very real and significant dangers to the participants. Do not forget the other ski aerials either.
Even seemingly safe sports like figure skating can be dangerous. In ’07, Canadian Jessica Dube was hit in the face by the skate of partner Bryce Davison. She needed surgery and 80 stitches to repair the damage; Dube and Davison will be Canada’s top pair in Vancouver.
Last Sept. 12, 19-year-old short-track speedskater J.R. Celski fell to ice at the U.S. trials, clutching his left leg after falling and slicing his thigh to the bone with his right skate.
The article notes the very obvious, J.R. could have been dead in seconds after his accident had his femoral artery been cut.
RIP Nodar Kumaritashvili