YANQING / OSLO (VG) Strong winds on the alpine slopes in Yanqing ensured that Sunday’s Olympic descent had to be postponed to another day.
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Initially, the race was to start at 04:00 Norwegian time, but after several delays, the message came around kl. 06:00 that the downhill can not be completed on Sunday.
– The men’s downhill had to be moved to another day due to the current weather situation with gusts of wind and the updated weather forecast, it says in a statement from the jury.
It is not clear which day the downhill should be run.
– In such situations, you really just try to relax as much as possible and try not to think about what can happen. It’s a shame it’s so exposed to the weather, so I think it’s going to be one issue throughout the Olympics, which is boring when we only have it every four years, says Aleksander Aamodt Kilde to VG.
– Just reset, and see if there will be opportunities tomorrow. Then we’ll see if there comes a day that is not like this. It has been windy here every day since we arrived, says Kjetil Jansrud to VG who described the wait as “not stressful”.
According to the communications manager for the Norwegian team, Espen Graff, sports manager Claus Ryste and the Norwegian camp were still positive that a competition could be held during Sunday in Yanqing before the final decision was made.
– Now we play cards and wait. One postponement is fine, but we did not expect two, Ryste told Discovery + when the race was postponed until kl. 06.
VG’s reporter Vegard Aulstad reported from the target area in Yanqing:
The wind has created problems during the training as well, and Friday’s last training was canceled after only three athletes had sat down.
One of the three was gold favorite Aleksander Aamodt Kilde, who finished in a time of 1.42.11 – the best that has been put on the ground.
The 29-year-old was also the best at Thursday’s training, and the second fastest of those who drove within all the gates at Wednesday’s training.
Jansrud and Adrian Smiseth Sejersted are the other two Norwegians on the starting list in what is the first competition for the alpinists in the Beijing Olympics.
– For every hour it is exciting whether it will be or not, but we just sat and played cards and enjoyed ourselves. What can you say. I really think it’s all right, says Sejersted to VG.
Kilde is considered one of the biggest favorites in both downhill and super-G, and even has faith in a medal.
– I always have a goal of winning races, and it will be a bit the same in the Olympics, I feel. One must dare to go there with an understanding that things can go very well, but at the same time a thought that this sport is quite brutal and there are small margins. As the season has gone so far, there are pure mistakes that need to be made so that it does not go my way, the Lommedalen driver told VG before leaving for China.
Six wins, one 2nd place, two 6th places, 7th place and 9th place are the results so far this season.
But the speed phantom has a lot to revenge. The Pyeongchang Olympics in 2018 were anything but a success for Kilde. The speed cannon had replaced Atomic with Head and had big goals before the championship. Unfortunately, it ended with the following results: The combination: 21st place. Down 15th place. Super-G: 13th place. Grand Slalom: Drove out.
– I came into that Olympics and had as much faith as I have now. But it was a bit naive in a way. Changing the ski brand takes time. You can drive fast in training and all that, but then it comes to a point where I feel that I need some time for this to work. Then of course you can ask questions about why I changed ski brand just before an Olympic season … but eaten is eaten, as they say, he said while laughing a little at it.