16 February 2006

Well paint me pink and call me George!

BerlinBear avatarThe Brits, at whom I poked fun but a few hours ago about not having won any Winter Olympics medals yet, have bloody gone and won one! Jolly good show! I take it all back and apologise profusely.

Shelley Rudman has picked up a silver medal for great Britain in the women's skeleton, finishing second behind Switzerland's Maya Pederson. (Hear that, Kiwi in Zurich? Gold medal for your lot! I told you they'd come.) Rudman was placed fourth after the first run, but had a blinder on the second run - apparently, I missed it I'm afraid - and managed to sneak up into second. She was clearly pretty pleased about it too:
I just can't believe it. It feels really surreal. ... I'm really gobsmacked. I really wanted to get a bronze, so I'm certainly not complaining about a silver medal.
See, German media? That's how you're supposed to react to a silver medal at the Olympic bloody Games. Not this "only silver, what a disaster" nonsense.

In case you have no idea what the hell skeleton is (I didn't until yesterday either), then the Beeb has just the page for you. It's just like luge, only head-first and therefore just a bit more suicidal. It's about throwing yourself head-first down a steep icy track at around 140km/h, lying on a piece of metal that's about half as long as you are. It is, in other words, madness, but kind of exciting to watch.


See? Piece of cake. Or not.

In other news, thank heavens, the German speed-skating ladies did win the gold medal in the team pursuit event I mentioned earlier. While I'm pleased for them, I'm more pleased for me, because I'm not sure I could have handled another German television "Woe is us! What went wrong? Only silver"-Fest. So congratulations, and thank you, to Claudia Pechstein, Anni Friesinger and Daniela Ansch├╝tz-Thoms. Well done you, you've qualified for a photo.

[Source: ARD]

So, with all that, after day five of the Winter Olympics in Turin, the medals table looks like this:

Rank
NOCGoldSilverBronzeTotal
1United StatesUnited States6219
2GermanyGermany54110
3Russian Fed.Russian Fed.52411
4AustriaAustria3216
5SwedenSweden2114
6ItalyItaly2035
7FranceFrance2024
8EstoniaEstonia2002
9NorwayNorway16613
10CanadaCanada1348
11ChinaChina1236
12NetherlandsNetherlands1214
12SwitzerlandSwitzerland1214
14KoreaKorea1113
15AustraliaAustralia1001
16FinlandFinland0235
17BulgariaBulgaria0101
17CroatiaCroatia0101
17Czech RepublicCzech Republic0101
17Great BritainGreat Britain0101
17SlovakiaSlovakia0101
22LatviaLatvia0011
22UkraineUkraine0011

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