Snowbasin, Utah — The fans waiting for the start of the women’s downhill Monday were willing to wait patiently at the base of the Wildflower course.
Some sang songs, while others watched the men’s snowboard competition on the Jumbotron. A few even waved American flags through the air, warming up to see Picabo Street and Steamboat’s Caroline Lalive compete for medals with the rest of the world’s best.
But Street, Lalive and the others never made it to the bottom of the hill.
That’s because things were not as calm at the top of the Snowbasin Ski Area as they were at the bottom. A steady, driving wind forced officials to postpone the race nearly two hours after it was scheduled to begin. Finally, just before noon, the decision was made to reschedule the event.
The announcement was made over the public address system and more than 25,000 fans filed out of the stadium and began the trek to the next big test of the day keeping patient as they waited in long lines to catch shuttle buses back to the parking lots several miles away.
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Among the many fans making the trip from the site were Lalive’s mother, Frances Lalive, and a diehard group of Lalive supporters.
They were easy to spot in specially made red, white and blue T-shirts that read TEAM LALIVE and had a picture of the skiing star printed on the front of them.
“She’s got a great outlook,” Frances Lalive said of her daughter. “I talked to her last night and she is totally psyched.”
Lalive is one of four American skiers scheduled to race in the event.
Street, Kristin Clark and Jonna Mendes will also take part in the event.
On Saturday, Lalive was second to teammate Street during a training run. However, she fell off the pace in Sunday’s training run.
“She picked up a bad cold but finally got some approved cold medicine and she got lots of rest yesterday,” Frances Lalive said.
Lalive will now ski the downhill today, the combined on Thursday and the super-G on Sunday.
She also has a shot, if she does well in the combined, to compete in the slalom.
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