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Gold Medalist

Despite the lack of snowfall in Vancouver, the half-Canadian mogulist Hannah Kearney has given the U.S. its first gold medal of the games. "Kearney’s victory came as a tremendous disappointment to the Canadian fans huddled under umbrellas and shivering in ponchos at the base of the mogul run Saturday, the first full day of competition. It deepened the gloom hovering over the mountain here, where the sun has not shone for days, where the weather has been unseasonably warm and where there has been much more rain than snow. The moguls had to be fashioned out of snow trucked and helicoptered in from higher elevations, and there was bare, muddy earth on either side of the run. Cypress Mountain felt more like the setting for a Gothic movie, in fact, than for a competition that takes place under the lights and where, in keeping with mogul skiing’s freestyle, hot-dogging origins, it is customary to play rock music as the racers come bouncing down the hill. Depressing toothpaste squiggles of slushy snow lined the sides of the roadways. The trees, dark and dripping, were shrouded in mist. As fog blew across the course, there was some concern early in the day that the judges might not to be able to see the start of the run and that the event would have to be postponed. The skiers carried umbrellas as they rode up in the chairlift."
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