Collision crashes Olympic hopes of American downhill star

IAN BUSBY

, Last Updated: 9:12 AM ET

As the wind howled across Alberta, Canada's Olympic hockey hopes were also blown away on Day 6 of the Games.

However, losing 3-1 in an upset by Finland still wasn't as bad at the time as the broken leg that knocked American skier Pam Fletcher out of the women's downhill.

Dave King's Canadian team had no way of knowing losing to the Finns on three fluke goals would eventually cost them a medal because of the wonky points format.

Just hours before the women's downhill was set to start at Nakiska, Fletcher collided with a course worker while warming up, breaking her leg and injuring her elbow. The event was delayed due to weather, as were the events at COP. The 90-metre ski jumping was postponed for the second straight day, but the women's luge was finally concluded after being delayed a day. Steffi Walter defended her gold medal from Sarajevo in an East German sweep, something that has become the norm in the event. However, there was a bright spot as Marie-Claude Doyon made history, sliding to a Canadian best-ever seventh.

At the Olympic Oval, the news was tough for Canada's most decorated Olympian, Gaetan Boucher, finished out of the medals in the 1,000m event, which was won by Soviet Nikolai Gouliaev. Boucher's result was still better than American Dan Jansen, whose sister died a few days earlier. Just as he did in the 500m race, Jansen fell in the 1,000m as the news weighed on him.

Meanwhile, the figure skating showdown was being set. Canadian Brian Orser took first place in the men's figure-skating short program, setting up a long-program duel with American Brian Boitano.


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