What to watch from Pyeongchang on Day 11 of the Olympics
By MAGAN CRANE, Associated Press
PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) — Re-entry after a three-day weekend can be hard. But remember, the Olympics are still going on! We’re here with the highlights to help get you through your Tuesday that feels like a Monday because of Presidents Day. (All times Eastern.)
If it’s prime time in North America, there must be a prime event scheduled, and tonight is no exception. Women’s figure skating starts with the short program at 8 p.m. Watch for American Mirai Nagasu to land a triple axel, which she did in the team competition, making her the first U.S. woman to do so in the Olympics. While it can be hard for the casual fan to tell a salchow from a lutz, the axel jump is easier to pick out because she will take off facing forward. That means a triple actually requires 3½ rotations before landing. The Russians also have some strong contenders who may dazzle the judges.
Another fan favorite is set for tonight: the women’s downhill. The skiers will take to the 1¾-mile course at 9 p.m. U.S. star Lindsey Vonn finished a strong third in the second training run, a full second faster than a previous run. After suggesting she might compete in all five events, fellow American Mikaela Shriffin withdrew from the downhill and decided to concentrate on the combined, which will be Thursday. Weather has forced a compressed schedule that would have had her racing two days in a row. In the downhill, there are fewer turns to navigate; racers are just trying to find the fastest line down the course. Austria’s Stephanie Venier was the fastest in the second training run at 1 minute, 39.75 seconds.
After a stunning tie for gold for the men’s doubles, the women will take to the bobsled track, with the first of four heats at 6:50 a.m. In bobsled, all four heats count toward the standings. In the women’s event, the two athletes push at the start to gather momentum before hopping into the sled. Once in motion, the driver steers around the sharp turns while the rider in the back tries to stay still on the bumpy ride until pulling up the brakes at the finish. Speeds can reach 90 mph.
For a taste of something special at the Pyeongchang Games, tune in to watch short-track speedskating. The South Koreans love this event and dominate in competition. As a result, the venue is packed with devoted fans at each race, rocking out to K-pop music. The women’s 3,000-meter relay medal race will be at 8:29 a.m. Watch for the coordinated chaos as athletes transfer in and out of the race with a push on the tush!
The first big doping scandal of the games has hit curling, of all sports. The curling world was stunned because the athletes pride themselves on a spirit of good sportsmanship. Russian curler Alexander Krushelnitsky, who won bronze with his partner in the mixed doubles last week, is facing a doping charge that could hurt Russia’s chance at Olympic reinstatement. How will the drama affect play? We’ll find out when men have a round at 6:05 a.m. The women will have another round at 7:05 a.m.
The Swiss men will face Germany and Finland will face host South Korea in playoff games at 7:10 a.m. The puck will drop at 10:10 a.m. on the men’s first quarterfinal game when the United States will play the Czech Republic.
The biathlon mixed relay medal run will start at 6:15 a.m. Like in regular biathlon, athletes must sprint on cross-country skis and then stop — with hearts pounding — to shoot five targets. In the relay, they get three extra bullets, but if they need them, they have to load them by hand. If after using all eight they still haven’t hit the five targets, they must ski a 150-meter penalty loop. For the handoff, athletes make contact within a 30-meter transition zone.
More AP Olympic coverage: https://wintergames.ap.org