Vancouver Games: Day 3
Competing on a course that was shortened for safety's sake after a Georgian luger died on the opening day of the Vancouver Games, Germany's Felix Loch won the gold medal on Sunday. Loch, already a two-time world champion at 20, is the youngest luge Olympic gold medalist in history.
Of the 13 golds awarded in Olympic luge, nine have gone to Germans. Vancouver Games winner Felix Loch finished his four heats in 3 minutes, 13.085 seconds, well ahead of teammate and silver medalist David Moeller (3:13.764) and bronze medalist Armin Zoeggeler (3:14.375) of Italy, the two-time defending Olympic champion.
Tony Benshoof of the U.S. finished eighth in the luge.
Johnny Spillane struck a big blow for the U.S. cross-country skiing program by earning the first medal ever for an American in the Nordic combined normal hill, an event that has been in the Olympics since 1924. Spillane took home silver, finishing a narrow four-tenths of a second behind gold medalist Jason Lamy Chappuis, who was born in Montana but competes for France.
Jason Lamy Chappuis said he had given up hope of catching Johnny Spillane until he saw him slowing down upon reaching the stadium at Whistler Olympic Park.
In an event that begins with one jump on the normal hill and concludes with a 10-kilometer cross-country race, Jason Lamy Chappuis's jump put him 46 seconds ahead of his nearest competitor heading into the cross-country race.
Todd Lodwick of the U.S., the reigning world champ in Nordic combined, finished fourth by seven-tenths of a second.
Jenny Potter turned in her first Olympic hat trick and became the leading scorer in U.S. Olympic history as her ice hockey squad defeated China 12.1.
Jenny Potter now has eight goals and 18 assists in Olympic competition.
China goalie Shi Yao was no match for the U.S., which led 5-0 after the first period and finished with 61 shots on goal.
Canada's long wait for a gold medal-performance by one of its own on home turf finally materialized as Alexandre Bilodeau won the men's moguls.
Alexandre Bilodeau blazed through the slushy moguls, tore down the course in 23.17 seconds and posted a score of 26.75. When the final skier, Guilbaut Colas of France, had his sixth-place score flashed on the board, the Canadian crowd went crazy.
Bryon Wilson of the U.S. States finished third in the moguls.
China's Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo, who came out of retirement last year for one last shot at Olympic glory, shattered the record for most points in a short program, scoring 76.66 points. The pair, bronze medalists in the 2002 and 2006 Olympics, bested their previous record by 1.30 points.
Caydee Denney and Jeremy Barrett were in 14th position after the short program. They are the reigning U.S. champions.
Amanda Evora and Mark Ladwig, surprise silver medalists at last month's U.S. championships, are 10th after the performance of their career at their first major international event.
Tim Burke, from Paul Smiths, N.Y., had three penalties and finished the biathlon (10K sprint) in 26:54.8 -- good for 47th place. Jeremy Teela's ninth-place finish paced the Americans.