Wednesday, February 10

Let Women Jump

Our subject this week blogs and websites. With the Olympics about to begin, I'd like to highlight a new website for you all to check out. (Well, okay, it's not new; it's redesigned.)

Here's the link: wsjusa.com

And here's the story: During the 2006 Olympics in Torino, I was researching women's ski jumping for my book, SASS: THE FINNISH LINE, and happened to contact the kind people at Women's Ski Jump, USA for help. Until that time, I hadn't realized that women ski jumpers were not allowed to compete in the Olympics. I couldn't believe it. What century were we living in? Since that time, I've had a chance to meet the athletes featured in this MSN piece (below) and watch them in action. Sadly, I've also watch them have to fight for the right to be included in competition for the 2010 Vancouver games. They fought hard. They fought fair. But once again, the IOC voted not to include a women's ski jumping event this year. For some of the athletes - such as world champion Lindsay Van who holds the hill record at Whistler, where the Olympics will be held - the decision may have killed any hope of Olympic competition. For the sport, it means a sad lack of sponsors and a shrinking number of new athletes willing to give ski jumping a try, considering that they may never get to compete in their sport on an Olympic stage.

The website features a petition you can sign to show your support for the women jumpers. Please sign it if you feel so inclined.

You can read more about the bid for a women's jump event in today's WSJ article here.

Here's the MSN video:

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5 comments:

Alissa said...

What? That's ridiculous. What's the excuse for not allowing women's ski jumping in the Olympics?

Wendy Toliver said...

I remember how shocked I was when you first brought it to my attention, Gerb. Living close to Park City (where many of them train, as well as those getting ready for other winter competitions), I'm always seeing bumper stickers and new stories and an occasional fundraising effort. I think that little by little the word is getting out, but clearly there's a long way to go. It's great you're so passionatte about this and hopefully these amazing athletes will be able to realize their dream to compete in the Olympics.

Wendy Toliver said...

er, I meant "passionate"

Melissa Walker said...

I'm shocked at this too! Thanks for spreading the word, Gerb.

The Graef Family! said...

That is really sad that they dont let womens ski jumping in the Olympics!!Its 2010 people!! Women have been allowed to vote and own land for over a 100 years yet the can't ski jump in the Olympics?!?!? Thats the most ridiculus thing ever!!! Totally signing the pettion!