February 19, 2006

Full contact fun

As I believe Dave mentioned, the most exciting event to happen to the Olympics in years is one that I never would have anticipated enjoying so much. I give you...Snowboard Cross!

In essence, it's a twisty hilly downhill course, where four snowboarders go down simultaneously - first to the finish wins. Some contact is allowed (like pushing someone out of the way), but more aggressive behavior (pulling someone's jacket) is not.

I know that description doesn't do it justice - you really have to see it to believe it. And it's drawn some amazing crossover appeal - I loved it, my mom loved it, and the media is just eating it up. An American won the men's event - Seth Westcott.

And a woman from the USA (Lindsey Jacobellis) would have won as well, but when she had a huge lead at the end, she decided to be a dumbass show-off, did a little trick on the last hill, and fell. So the Swiss boarder, Tanja Frieden (who happens to be Westcott's girlfriend) sailed in to take the gold. Again I say - dumbass.

It's hard to find any free video, but try this one for a quick example of what this sport looks like. Enjoy!


Stef said...

An Olympic question for ya... what's the difference between pairs figure skating and ice dancing?

Dancer in DC said...

The short version - in ice dancing the couple is always in contact - no jumps, no lifts. It's pretty much ballroom on the ice.

A simple explanation of ice dancing:

Stef said...

Aha, makes sense. So ice dancing is a little sexier, but with less flying?

I feel like I need to rent The Cutting Edge again...

Lady Brandenburg said...

Um, excuse me, but it was I who mentioned my new obsession of people knocking each other off a snowy track - it's like full contact skiing - like hockey - like roller derby - freakin' awesome!!

Dancer in DC said...

:) So sorry for the oversight. To any and all who mentioned it, I thank you.

Further clarification on ice dancing - there are lifts, but the woman can't be lifted over the man's head. And they can be out of contact, but only for brief periods.