2010 Winter Olympics: Downhill Called Off, Bode Miller's Medal Hopes Put on Hold

Ash MarshallSenior Analyst IFebruary 13, 2010

WHISTLER, BC - FEBRUARY 10:  Bode Miller of United States competes in the men's alpine skiing downhill practice held at Whistler Creekside ahead of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics on February 10, 2010 in Whistler, Canada.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)
Clive Rose/Getty Images

Continuing rain and warm temperatures have forced officials to call off Saturday's scheduled men's downhill.

The announcement was made by the International Ski Federation and Vancouver organizers before dawn as soft, slushy conditions made the snow surface unsuitable for racing.

The medal event for men's downhill has been rescheduled for Monday, Feb. 15 with a 10:30 AM local start time.

Among the American contingent getting the day off as a result of the cancellation is Bode Miller. He was expected to compete in all five alpine skiing events, although after a strong 2002 Olympics largely disappointed in Torino four years ago.

He will next be in action Sunday in a super-combined training run. His first chance of a medal will now come on Monday.

Elsewhere on the mountaintop, the U.S. snowboardcross team said the rain has not dampened their spirits.

"It's snowboarding," said five-time X Games gold medalist Nate Holland. "We work in this stuff all the time. Super cold, icy conditions...wet, rainy fog...it's all a part of it. I grew up in this stuff over in Idaho, so I'm pretty comfortable."

Two-time Olympian Graham Watanabe (Sun Valley, ID) said his only concern is getting one or two runs on the course on race day, in order to get a feel for the snow.

"It is pretty wet, so as it compacts, it's going to form ripples in the snow, especially in the turny sections," he said. "Being stable on the board is going to be more difficult than on a smooth course."