Monday, 1 March 2010

Great Winter Olympics Canada.

For team GB, team Ireland and even for our one Northern Irish representative in team GB, sadly there wasn't much to write home from Vancouver about.  Every cloud has a silver lining though and as only one thing goes it was as good as it gets, it went to Amy Williams of team GB and it just so happened to be a gold medal. Thankfully, though the medals hauls wasn't as shiny as we'd hoped for our local nations, Canada put on a great show and although I've only seen a few, it was my favourite winter Olympics yet!

As you may have seen, unfortunately Jenna McCorkell fell during her routine in the figure skating short programme and came 2nd last so didn't qualify to skate in the free skate, hopefully she'll be back in 2014 to try again. Brilliantly though, team GB did win a gold and that was won by Amy Williams in the Skeleton who led the event from start to finish through all 4 runs.

In the winter sports that I really enjoy watching, there were some great games, sadly, GB in the Curling didn't quite make the big shots to qualify for the medals games. The games were compelling viewing in our household and it became yet another must watch. My dad stayed up past 1am which is unheard of and Norn Girl stayed up with me into the early hours of the morning on more than one occasion. The Bobsleigh events were also a bit of a disappointment because of the crashes and slow times for those who did make it over the finish line for both Ireland and GB.

The big surprise for me with these games was the great online and TV coverage, its given us a lot more chance to sample more from these games than probably any other winter Olympics. I have to admit, I've enjoyed so many of the other sports I wouldn't usually make time to watch - such as the Nordic Combined and the Snowboarding events. Not to mention the enthralling Ski Cross which was new to this Olympics and is a sport that will undoubtedly have quite a big billing in Russia after its d├ębut success in Canada.

My little 'lets go Canada, lets go" from the end of my previous winter Olympics post seemed well placed. A record gold medals haul and the clinching gold for that record came in the final event - the men's ice hockey final. It was 2-1 with only 24.5 seconds left but a last gasp equaliser with their goaltender pulled to give six vs five paid off and USA scored to make it 2-2 and took the game to overtime. I think most neutrals like me were probably routing for Canada at this point and a not long into the extra period, a great goal capped a good game and as the head guards came off the players heads and were thrown into the air, it seemed a fitting end to a games of compelling viewing. Lets hope the strengths from these games can be taken on board for the London 2012 summer games and we can all have a great time and maybe, if we're lucky, have a few reasons to celebrate like most of Canada probably will be tonight whilst watching the closing ceremony. I'm looking forward to that and the Sochi 2014 winter Olympics already!

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