Sochi, Russia • Could be a big day for Utah residents at the Sochi Olympics.
Not only does world champion Sarah Hendrickson of Park City have a shot at a medal in the first women’s ski jumping event to be held at an Olympics on Tuesday, but several other women who live in the Beehive State could stand on the podium, too.
Speedskaters Heather Richardson and Brittany Bowe race the 500 meters. Richardson, a West Jordan resident, is the most likely medalist, having been in the top five at all eight World Cup races this season, with a silver and two bronze medals mixed in there. Brigham Young University student Kate Hansen won’t medal in the luge, but freeskier Devin Logan of Park City has a strong chance in slopestyle; she’s among the top four favorites, according to online bookmakers.
And in one of the day’s premiere events for Team USA, cross-country skier Kikkan Randall — born in Salt Lake City, though raised and living in Alaska — aims for her nation’s first gold in that event, in the women’s freestyle sprint.
Questions loom about Hendrickson, though. She has taken it easy on her training jumps to avoid stressing her surgically repaired knee and been close to last on almost every jump. Does she still have what it takes to contend with Japan’s Sara Takanashi and in-form Daniela Iraschko-Stolz of Austria? The world will soon find out.
- Michael C. Lewis
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