Winter Olympics: Bobsleigh pair eager to rise above row
IRELAND'S women's bobsleigh team will finally get to push off in Canada in the early hours of tomorrow morning.
Aoife Hoey (Laois) and Claire Bergin (Dublin) get their competition under way tonight, after a nerve-wracking build-up which has included two separate, unsuccessful objections from other countries looking to get their spot in the competition.
They will have two runs tomorrow morning (1am and 2.10am Irish time) and a third at 1am on Thursday morning, and if they are in the top 20 after round three, they will then get a fourth and final run.
"The track is very fast, the fastest we've ever seen but we aim to do our best for Ireland," said Bergin, a trainee accountant from Foxrock who, like team-mate Hoey, is already an Irish international in athletics.
Wexford man Pat Shannon (32) has already finished 25th of 28 competitors in the skeleton competition on the notoriously fast sliding course at Whistler which claimed the life of Georgian luge competitor Nodar Kumaritashvili during training. Irish slalom skier Kirsty McGarry also opens her competition in the Giant Slalom tomorrow (6pm Irish time).
Canada's ice hockey team failed to impress for the second straight game, losing 5-3 to the USA.
Now the host nation, who had been gold medal favourites, face the prospect of a quarter-final against Russia -- a match-up many expected would be the final -- provided they can beat Germany in a play-off tonight.
American Bode Miller secured his first Olympic gold medal, in the super combined, after rival Aksel Lund Svindal failed to finish the slalom. Miller, who was tipped to win five medals in Turin four years ago but left empty-handed, had already taken bronze in the downhill and super-G silver.