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August

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Posts posted by August

  1. Two-run downhill was held just this past weekend by the FIS. So much for being sacrilege.

    This is just my opinion and I'm probably a purist of the highest order.

    In my opinion, a two-run sprint downhill should be used only under exceptional circumstances. The past weekend was exceptional; the races were already moved from from St. Anton to Zauchensee, and neither Zauchensee was able to prepare a full downhill course. When the options were a sprint downhill or no downhill at all, the right decision was made.

    That actually wasn't the premiere for the two-run sprint downhill. That format was used in Kitzbühel in the 90s in the Friday race, to distinguish it from Saturday's traditional Hahnenkamm downhill. Again fine.

    A more recent example of considering the two-run downhill was in Val Gardena few years ago. After a snowfall at night, it was clear the top section cannot be prepared for the race, so they were going to run it as a sprint downhill. Eventually, they start got delayed so much that they had to run the downhill as a one-run race on a shortened course. Not ideal, and even worse was the Hahnenkamm downhill last year, when it had to be shortened to under a minute.

    Those are the exceptional circumstances I'm talking about. But lack of slopes with sufficient height difference isn't. I might change my opinion on that if there were countries really deserving major alpine skiing events despite the lack of a full DH slope. But there aren't, China isn't one.

  2. It really doesn't. The whole point of downhill is the endurance required. A two run "downhill" would be something entirely different than a downhill.

    That being said, I'd love to see the Olympic downhill have a qualification race that cuts down the field to 30 and that seeds the starting order.

    I'm fine with a two-run sprint downhill when a full-length one-run downhill is impossible for unforeseen reasons, like next weekend at women's races in Zauchensee where they run on a shorted course due to lack of snow.

    But I like your idea of two full runs. A reason why I don't rate the Olympics so high in alpine skiing (below the World Cup titles and alongside classic races like Hahnenkamm) is that they're really not that different from World Cup races; just a bigger TV audience but actually also a weaker field as even big ski nations can send only four athletes. If I were in charge, I'd ape Ski-Flying Worlds and make both the Olympic downhill and the super-G two-day events with two-run aggregate times deciding the results. That would make Olympics more special. No need for that in technical disciplines; they already have two runs, plus with DNFs being so common there, doubling runs would make them a survival battle.

  3. The alpine skiing downhill event alongside super-G, long-distance cross-country skiing, and Nordic combined are events whose inclusion for the 2022 Winter Olympics is threatened. (Elsewhere I've also seen normal hill ski jumping mentioned.)

    http://www.skiracing.com/premium/will-the-olympic-downhill-be-eliminated

    A reason for eliminating those would be reduce costs and have shorter ski slopes and cross-country trails, less snowmaking, and just one ski jumping hill.

    While I think the cost of Olympics must be reduced, it should not affect the essentials of the Games. Alpine skiing has four plus one disciplines; the speed disciplines downhill and super-G, and the technical disciplines giant slalom and slalom, plus alpine combined of downhill and slalom. And I think a major championship must feature them all.

    Well, there's a solution to retain downhill, to have it with two shorter runs. But two one-minute runs isn't the same as one two-minute run. Maybe the Olympics would be just fine with these changes; however I feel it'd lose some prestige within alpine skiing, especially as alpine skiing has highly appreciated season-long World Cup titles.

    As for long-distance cross-country skiing, I couldn't anymore care less, the damage has already happened. I can't blame the IOC as the FIS changed men's 50km / women's 30km to a mass start instead of a time trial at the 2005 Worlds, how it's also been at the Olympics since 2006. So often a 50km mass start ends with a big lead group still together after 49km and the winner is the one with best sprint abilities, not necessarily the best fitness like in the traditional 50km time trials. As long as 50km is not a time trial, I'd be fine with no 50km at all.

    Getting rid of Nordic combined makes no sense; it doesn't require any additional venues, there's already the jumping hill and the ski trails.

    Getting rid of normal hill wouldn't be such a big deal. It's very rarely used for men on top level, usually only at major championships. Without the normal hill competition, the large hill could have a two-day, four-round competition like ski-flying world championship; doubling rounds would make it fairer.

    However, having both hills is such an established tradition in ski jumping major championships. And the difference is comparable to 100m and 200m in running or swimming; that's why having two ski jumping events feels fair.

    Also, women's competitions usually take place on normal hill, like the sole Olympic competition. That's another reason to retain the normal hill.

    And thinking about the Games' legacy; while not anymore so common in competitions, normal hills are used for training. It compliments the venue, making it not only for competitions but also for training.

  4. Not very compactly but you have new rules now.

    Stockolm-Äre could be a good idea.

    That's what they were planning and some people found that problematic.

    And Stockholm-Åre distance is about the same as Stockholm-Lillehammer. Åre might be more ready and better for Alpine skiing. Lillehammer had Alpine skiing in two venues Kvitfjell (downhill & super-G) and Hafjell (giant slalom & slalom), Åre can host all Alpine skiing events at the same mountain with a common finish area. Besides, I think Lillehammer doesn't have separate downhill slopes for men and women which is a requirement for the Alpine Worlds and what they have in Åre.

    On the other hand, Lillehammer would have the luge/bob/skeleton track what Sweden obviously doesn't have.

    Obviously hosting Alpine events and luge/bob/skeleton in Lillehammer might be a bit less costly but I can't see it as so much better an option, especially as the distance is the same, that Sweden would have some events in Norway.

  5. that looks really weird, but hey it works. And with Tokyo being limited in space, it makes sense for them more than anyone else to do just this.

    Davis Cup has had also some other interesting venues. This year's final in Lille:

    topelement.jpg

    The soccer stadium has some seats installed below the other half of the soccer field. That half of the field is moved aside to get those seats exposed. Also, the stadium has a retractable roof and the Davis Cup final was played indoors.

    The final some years ago in Seville:

    78382.jpg

    The court was built at one end of an athletics stadium and a roof was installed above the tennis court.

    The benefit from doing that is to use the existing media center of the stadium. That would make sense also at the Olympics. No need to build a new venue if there's one for another sport that can be temporarily converted.

  6. Meaning that a future host city may add or remove sports depending on what's already on the ground. Maybe Tokyo can forego the white-wate-rafting venue since that'a a rather expensive venue to be built from scratch. I DIDN'T say that Tokyo (or any future would-be hosts) HAS to do it.

    Still, existing venues can be temporarily converted for other sports. As an example, a baseball stadium converted for Davis Cup tennis in San Diego:

    the-petco-dance.jpg

  7. Triple Jump YES. It'ss redundant when you already have long jump.

    200m NO. Classic event, draws lot of interest.

    Triple jump has specialists, only few are good both in it and long jump.

    200m is a way less special event. While it's the best event for some sprinters, they usually do also 100m/200m, while not necessarily at the Olympics.

  8. I really don't think the number of athletics events is the biggest problem of the Olympics. You need the athletics stadium anyway. I think more important would be reducing the number of venues than the number of events and thus athletes.

    But if some athletics events should be dropped, it would be only running events. Each throw and jump sport are so different that they deserve their place in the Olympics. I have the distances I might drop in parenthesis:

    100m

    (200m)

    400m

    (800m)

    1500m

    (5000m)

    10000m

    Also, I feel reducing the number of athletics events might devalue the Olympics. There would be athletes whose biggest championship is the Worlds, thus making it rather the meeting of all the best.

  9. I was just wondering if southern hemisphere countries had any chances to get the Winter Olympics. Let's imagine some of those countries would have a strong bid, like a perfect WOG host city. But, the scheduling. Would there be any chance for August WOG? That'd be the offseason for most winter sports. Though ski jumpers have their summer competitions, Alpine skiers train in southern hemisphere and there are some lower-level races there. And the irregual World Cup of Hockey has been in August/September.

    If there were a strong candidate for the WOG in southern hemisphere, I mean with winter sports success, then I think they shouldn't be discriminated but have the WOG in August. Of course, there's only a very little chance for those worries to ever happen.

  10. I don't think having events outside the host country is a problem if they are within a reasonable distance. Which is the best option: a) new venue with little use, B) existing venue outside the host country less than 100km from the host city, or c) existing venue in the host country over 500km from the host city? I think it's the option b.

    Have to ask about what they mean with allowing events in the host country ouside the host city? Already some events like sailing or ski sports take place outside the host city.

  11. I think it's really the media, officials and fans that need a compact, walkable area rather than the athletes. For example broadcasters don't want to have to set up multiple studios for the same sport.

    Still, I wouln't say one hockey arena in Lillehammer would be so bad. It's not like it's apart from everything, there are some sports in the Lillehammer region anyway.

  12. Given how much hockey players have to travel in their leagues, I wouldn't say the distance between Oslo and Lillehammer would really be a problem. Maybe a problem for corporate guests who'd attend other events in Oslo the same day.

    If travelling between cities would be a problem for players, sholdn't also the FIFA World Cup or the Olympics' football be played within one city? And if travelling is such a big problem for players, then they could do like they do at the Worlds, the round robin groups have different host cities.

  13. According to Wikipedia:

    That's also the reason why Krakow dropped the previous idea of using ice hockey venues in neighbouring towns. The bid committee was strongly adviced not to spread the ice hockey venues outside city boundary.

    I really don't see any problem with two host cities for hockey. The Worlds are usually played in two cities, possibly in different countries. That's not a problem for football in the summer games, why is it a problem with hockey in the winter games? I could see some potential benefits from the bigger market area. I might have different host cities for each round robin group.

  14. I'd have nothing against having one hockey arena in Oslo and one in Lillehammer as long as the final and the semifinals are played in Oslo. I think they could spread the hockey matches in two cities like they do with football matches in the summer games.

  15. The opposition party Arbeiderpartiet demands more reuse of existing venues from 1994. Such as Vikingskipet for the speed skating events, Håkons Hall for ice hockey events and Birkebeinern Skistadion for the biathlon events. This instead of building new venues in Oslo.

    Strongly support that. However, Oslo organisers whine about that it would ruin their concept of "Games in the City".

    If a low cost Olympics really was the target, then:

    Vikingskipet could be reused for the speed skating events. Which means one could scrap the planed venue at Valle Hovin in Oslo.

    Håkons Hall could be reused as the largest hockey venue. Which means one could scrap the planed venue at Stubberud in Oslo.

    Hamar Olympic Amphitheatre could be reused as the smaller hockey venue. Which mean one could scrap the planed upgrading of Jordal Amfi in Oslo.

    This also means scrapping the two planed training venues at Mortensrud and Sognsvann in Oslo. As Kristins Hall and Storhamar Ishall then would be used for training.

    Gjøvik Olympic Cavern Hall could be reused as the curling venue. Which means one could scrap the planed venue at Lørenskog just outside Oslo.

    Birkebeinern Ski Stadium could be reused as the biathlon venue. Which means one could scrap the planed venue at Grønmo in Oslo.

    However, that would only leave Holmenkollen as the venue for ski jumping, cross country skiing and Nordic combined, Telenor Arena as the venues for short track skating and figure skating, and the two venues for freestyle skiing and snowboarding events left in Oslo.

    And that's not in the interest of Oslo politicians and the leaders of NOC. Whose main target of hosting the Olympics is to get government funding for new venues in Oslo.

    I wouldn't support so extensive re-use of Lillehammer venues because they are so far from Oslo. I think the vanues should be as close to the host city as possible, only some more expensive venues could be farther, like ski slopes and luge track.

    I think biathlon should be close to cross-country skiing, some athletes compete in both sports. But I wonder why Holmenkollen couldn't host both of them. Holmenkollen ski stadium enables hosting biathlon, and I think 16 days should be enough for all cross-country, Nordic combined, and biathlon events.

  16. No offense, but it does not matter if you want the games in LA , just lie it does not matter if I want the games in Berlin. The US decides if they want the games and the past two bidding cycles have shown the US really does not want them.

    What I wanted to say was that it's not only L.A. residents wanting the games.

    And Quaker2001 answered well to your last sentence.

  17. I really hoped this wouldn't happen. Outside of LA residents does anyone want to see another Los Angeles Olympics? I think the majority of Americans would rather have the games in Paris or Rome.

    I'm not American but I'd like to see the Olympics in L.A. I think 2024 would be a high time for the USA to have the games, and the two cities I think first about the USA are N.Y. and L.A., and as the N.Y. 2012 bid ended up in a failure, I think L.A. would be a better host city. Also, L.A. has my favourite Olympic Stadium.

  18. I'd really welcome the idea of a permanent host city. I think the Olympics are becoming too big for rotating host cities. As an alternative for a permanent host city I'd propose downsizing the games, which I wouldn't really like.

    And I think there is only one possible permanent host city for the summer games, Athens. But that'd have some issues, I'm not sure Greece will ever host the Olympics again if the games keep on growing and Greece doesn't get a massive economical boost. And what about the Winter Games? I'd suggest Switzerland, as the IOC is located there, but that would mean both Summer and Winter Games in the Europe, which might be a problem.

    But what about selecting rotating (semi-)permanent host cities from each continent. I mean there would be six host cities all over the world, each hosting the games every 24 years, as long as they are willing and capable for that. The rotation would be something like Europe - South America - Asia - Africa - North America - Australasia - back to Europe, etc. For the Winter Games it could be Europe - NA - Asia in twelve-year cycles. For sure that would also have white elephant issues, what to do with all the venues in those 23 years between games?

  19. Stockhom getting the WOG would improve the chances of the countries that "deserve" to get the WOG but wouldn't have a compact venue area. I don't think we'd end up having WOGs like Paris or Rome with snow sports in the Alps. But e.g. Finland having the Alpine events abroad wouldn't anymore be such a big problem as there would've already been WOG with long distances. Of course, it would take at least 20 years to get the WOG back to Nordic countries so Finland wouldn't be the next one to get the games.

    On the other hand, Sweden getting the WOG with Stockholm, not with Östersund, might make it even more unlikely to get the WOG to a small city. That would be a precedent that it's better to bid with a distant large city than with a smal city close to all the venues.

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