Monday, February 07, 2011

Vancouver luge track safety revisionism

So now there's a possibly lawsuit driven attempt to bring up the tired old - discussed to death issue of the Vancouver Olympics luge track. At the time the top lugers had it right. That track was indeed dangerous for amateurs and non-elite lugers.

That was the real problem. This IOC politically correct "no country left behind" mentality that has led to the rise of underqualified exotic athletes in order to be inclusive so that as many athletes and countries as possible can be there. So this is what you get. Increased risk results and the expected value of increased accidents and tragedies. Strangely the earliest Yahoo article comments are pretty good and mention how dangerous and irresponsible it was letting Eddie the Eagle out there back in 1988 which is a root of this exotic athlete trend.

The solution was and still is to assure safety by filtering unqualified performers out of the competition. If that means a given country can't be in the Olympics well then deal with it. At the time in Vancouver after the accident they shortened the luge track which damaged the competition. The correct move would have been to let the qualified elite compete on the original design which they liked; and send the pretenders home for their own safety. It was wrong to water down the competition and bring down the level of the very best in order to accommodate those that didn't even belong there.

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