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Georgian Olympic luge competitor dies after horrific crash

February 12, 2010

WHISTLER – Georgian luge competitor Nodar Kumaritashvili has died after launching from the track and hitting his head on a metal pole during a training run Friday at Whistler Olympic Park.

The track is closed.

Coaches of the national teams are in meetings with FIL, the international luge federation.

The training run has been cancelled.

Kumaritashvili was going close to 150 km/h, near the end of the course, when he launched off the track. Witnesses say his body hit a metal pole. Medical personnel performed CPR through a plastic tube and almost immediately an ambulance rushed Kumaritashvili from Whistler Olympic Park to the local hospital.

Kumaritashvili turned 21 in November. He had competed in luge for Georgia since 2008.

Also Friday during training, 2002 and 2006 gold medallist Armin Zoeggler of Italy crashed rounding corner 11.

Zoeggler slid about 200 metres while holding his sled with one hand to keep from being hit with it. Zoeggler recovered from his crash and took his second run in a fast 47.9 to put him near the top of the training times.

On Wednesday there were several crashes during women’s luge training runs.

Romania’s Violeta Stramaturaru crashed and was knocked unconscious for a few minutes and was taken to the hospital.

Zoeggler recovered from his crash and took his second run in a fast 47.9 to put him near the top of the training times.

© copyright (c) CNS Olympics

© copyright (c) The Vancouver Sun

via The Vancouver Sun

 

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One Comment
  1. Anonymous permalink

    I think there’s a lot of respect in an error of pushing too hard than not hard enough. Even though the consequences are more dire, you’ll never know how hard you can push until you’ve pushed too hard.

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