A blanket of fog at Rosa Khutor Extreme Park was so heavy that Winter Olympics officials were forced to postpone the biathlon and snowboardcross events until Tuesday.
Officials decided to postpone the events early Monday afternoon, when the fog failed to lift and they were forced to cancel the seeding runs originally set for 10 am.
With visibility still very low, the expected 1:30 pm time for the start of the elimination rounds did not happen either.
The Winter Olympics race on Tuesday will have a different format, as there will be no qualifying and instead the racers will be bracketed based on their world ranking.
Seven heats of five riders each and one heat of four will compete for the top spots. The fisrt three in each group will advance to the quarterfinal rounds. Nate Holland and Trevor Jacob of the US will ride in the same opening heat.
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Site of men’s snowboard cross at Sochi Winter Olympics. The race was cancelled due to heavy fog. pic.twitter.com/E8zvvejtHi
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“This fog, it’s super dense up there,” a seven-time X Games winner in search of his first Olympic medal said. “It’s the Olympics. We want to have the best rider win and not have anything screwy.”
The fog was in contrast to the beautiful, mild weather that the Extreme Park has been experiencing during these Winter Olympics.
Australian snowboardcross racer Jarryd Hughes said:
“I called it as soon as I got here, that there would be bad weather on the day I race. It can’t stay sunny the whole time for that long.”
This is the second time there have been postponements at the top of the Caucasus Mountains. Sochi Officials had to push back the men’s 15-kilometer mass-start biathlon race from Sunday to Monday and also from Monday to Tuesday because of fog.
The conditions are particularly tough on the biathlon as the competitors need to have good visibility for the shooting range.
The men’s aerials, scheduled at the Winter Olympics on Monday night were not postponed due to the fog.
[Images Via Twitter]