Monday, February 21, 2011

Flashback: Feb. 21, 2010

Del Bosco crashes
Bob Mackin, QMI Agency

WEST VANCOUVER: Stop me if you’ve heard this one before.

Another Canadian crashed on the way to the podium at the 2010 Winter Olympics. This time it was Chris Del Bosco, the Sudbury, Ont., resident who is ranked third on the skicross world cup tour.

Del Bosco was racing fourth in the final of the first skicross event in Olympic history Sunday at Cypress Mountain.

He improved to third and then tumbled before the climactic jump to the finish. Del Bosco landed on his side and hit his head and shoulder. He received medical attention before leaving the course. Del Bosco finally spoke to the media more than two hours after the race, sporting a blackened right eye from the crash.

“It just didn't work out for me,” Del Bosco said, pausing to wipe tears from his eyes. “Third, I guess it's all right for some people, but I wanted to give 100% for my sport, my country.”

Del Bosco, 27, was the 2010 Winter X-Games gold medallist in January. The Vail, Colo., native with dual citizenship previously competed as a national-level alpine skier and mountain biker for the United States until drug and alcohol violations derailed his career.

“I left it all out there, that’s what I came to do,” Del Bosco said. “It could’ve happened in any round. I made it to the final.”

World cup leader Michael Schmid of Frutigen, Switzerland became the sport’s first gold medallist. He edged silver medallist Andreas Matt of Flirsch, Austria and bronze medallist Audun Groenvold of Oslo, Norway.

"I was in fourth behind Chris and I was thinking, 'It isn't over until you cross the finish line',” said Groenvold. “I hung on his tail. When you see someone crash like that, it's a mixed feeling."

Davey Barr, a 32-year-old from Brackendale, B.C., finished second in the consolation final and sixth overall. He was called upon as an 11th hour replacement for teammates David Duncan and Brady Leman, who were both injured training at Cypress.

“Everybody else had the two days of training before today,” Barr said. “I managed to get three runs in this morning before the race.”

Skicross was the only sport added to the Olympics for Vancouver 2010.

“We showed the world today what a cool sport this is,” Barr said.

Reigning world champion Ashleigh McIvor of Pemberton, B.C., leads Canada’s women into their first Olympic skicross race on Tuesday at Cypress.

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