In a breakthrough performance that may have resurrected an always-promising international career, Alissa Czisny won the ladies event at the Grand Prix final in Beijing over the weekend. For years, Czisny, a 23-year-old Bowling Green grad, has been considered a brilliant artist with the tightest spins and most elegant turns in the sport. But she's also a capable jumper who would often crumble under the spotlight of competition. This weekend, she put together two strong efforts, taking the lead during the short program and maintaining the margin through the free skate.
RICHMOND, British Columbia -- It didn't go the way Shani Davis had pictured it in his mind. For Davis, the presumptive favorite in the 1,500 meters, the world record holder who has rarely been beaten in the Kings race this season, he just didn't have it in him today.
Mark the day February 17, 2010 in an Olympic history book. Then hold it up as a benchmark for future days, because it may well have been the single greatest day the U.S. Olympic team has ever had at a Winter Olympics. No, there was no Miracle on Ice, and Eric Heiden didn't win a jillion gold medals, but here is the case: Never before has a U.S. team won six medals in a single day at the Winter Games. No other country has ever won more than six. At the 1988 Calgary Olympics, the last time a Winter Games took place in Canada, the United States won six medals over the duration of the entire Olympics.
VANCOUVER -- "Four years ago, Lindsey Vonn limped to the start of the Olympic downhill in the mountains north of Turin, Italy, deeply in pain from a terrifying training crash that left her lower back and hip bruised and sore. She was a shell of the dynamic racer who was a threat to medal in the race (or win it), but she skied anyway, and finished a game but disappointed eighth."
What a difference a week makes for Lindsey Vonn. The U.S. alpine star had been horrible in Aspen, failing to qualify in the giant slalom and skiing off-course in the slalom. This past weekend, though, she nearly won all three races in Lake Louise, Canada. What's more, Vonn performed brilliantly under the same kind of conditions that often plague skiers in Whistler, site of the upcoming Olympics.
U.S. speed skater Shani Davis' season got off to a blistering start in Berlin last weekend. Davis brought home his first two long-track gold medals of the season, winning the 1,000 meters on Friday in 1:08.53, a half-second faster than the previous track record.
Figure skater Sasha Cohen produced a stunning performance on the ice when she shimmied and sashayed her way through the ladies short program. And there was a stunning performance off the ice too, when two U.S. speed skaters pretended they liked each other.