February 24, 2010 |
The designer of the crash-plagued Whistler Sliding Center track said there was never any pressure from Olympic organizers to make the circuit as fast as possible. "No, not at all, in no shape or form," veteran track designer Ugo Gurgel said Tuesday. Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili was killed when his sled flew off the track at speeds nearing 90 mph during a training run just hours before the Olympic flame was ignited. After an investigation by local authorities, officials of the Vancouver Organizing Committee and International Luge Federation blamed the fatal crash on human error.
February 16, 2010 |
The father of the Georgian luger killed at the Olympics said Monday that his son worried the track was too dangerous, but insisted on competing because he had come to the Games to try to win. "He told me: 'I will either win or die,' " David Kumaritashvili said. "But that was youthful bravado; he couldn't be seriously talking about death." The father, in an interview at his home on the snow-covered slopes of Georgia's top ski resort, said he had spoken to his son, Nodar , shortly before the fatal training run Friday.
February 13, 2010 |
Just hours before the caldron was lighted to mark the start of these Winter Olympics, a young athlete's life was snuffed out in a horrific crash on the world's fastest luge track. On a morning training run under the first blue sky in days, Nodar Kumaritashvili, 21, of the Republic of Georgia lost control of his sled at about 80 mph as he came out of the final curve -- nicknamed Thunderbird -- and approached the finish line. He catapulted over the outer lip of the track and slammed into an unpadded roof support post.
February 11, 2010 |
For television giant NBC Universal, the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, Canada, is shaping up to be a bumpy downhill ride. The network, weighed down by overpaying for rights fees, expects to lose at least $250 million on its coverage of the Games that begin Friday night. Sluggish ad sales -- at least initially -- helped dig NBC deeper into the financial hole. On top of that, there are few star U.S. athletes to whip up excitement. And on Wednesday, the top U.S. female skier, Lindsey Vonn, revealed that she bruised her shin during practice last week and might not be able to compete.
February 2, 2010 |
Two years ago, Russian bobsled federation officials approached the designer of one of the world's fastest bobsleds and offered him, "money, women, money and women" to transfer his loyalties -- and secrets -- from the U.S. team. "I told them, 'It's not going to happen. This stuff isn't for sale,' " says Bob Cuneo, retelling the story while leaning on a bar and laughing. Now 18 years after he partnered with former NASCAR driver Geoff Bodine to produce a world-class winter racing machine, Cuneo hopes the four-man competition will end with the perfect retirement present: the first U.S. gold medal since 1948.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 14, 2009 |
When Pedro Hinojosa dreams about the future, he knows he wants something different from the hand-blistering digging and chopping he does to help out on his father's gardening route. He is drawn to a medical career, possibly as an emergency room technician, a nurse or even a doctor. First, he has to get through freshman year at Pasadena City College.
February 10, 2008 |
It's not the swiftest plan. An impulsive Sunday drive up to Big Bear at 1:48 p.m. to squeeze in an hour of last-minute family snow time before turning around and sitting in hours of weekend traffic back to L.A. But snow is snow. And in the heart of Los Angeles on a tepid Sunday afternoon, there's nothing quite like asking your kids if they want to go tobogganing -- just to see the utterly bewildered look on their faces.
October 21, 2007 |
A British explorer says he is planning the most accurate survey of the thickness of the Arctic ice to gauge the effects of global warming. The Vanco Arctic Survey will entail a 1,240-mile trek to the North Pole next year. On the way, explorers will take millions of readings of the thickness and density of the ice and snow to try to provide the clearest picture of the polar ice cap and how long it will last.
February 20, 2007 |
Here is an ironclad rule for selling snowmobiles: You need snow. Warmer weather and thin snowfalls since the late 1990s have melted sales at Polaris Industries Inc. and Arctic Cat Inc., the only snowmobile makers in the U.S. After one more wimpy winter in a long string of them, some dealers say they are struggling to clear out last year's sleds, let alone sell out of this year's. Some gave up months ago.