RICK SAY didn't march out to the pool deck for the men's 200-m freestyle final. He sauntered. He drank in the packed crowd, the flags, the giant scoreboard that had his name alongside Australia's Ian Thorpe, U.S. phenom Michael Phelps and the Netherlands' Pieter van den Hoogenband.
Capitalizing on the public interest aroused by the Canada-Soviet Hockey Series of 1972, Douglas Fisher of Hockey Canada, and Alan Eagleson of the NHL Players' Association, arranged to bring national teams from Europe to compete against Canada and the US in tournaments which would be staged, every 3 or 4 years, in North American arenas.
Water skiing is a sport in which competitors slalom, perform tricks, and jump on water skis while being towed by a speedboat. The sport was derived from snow SKIING and aquaplaning and was started in the US by Ralph Samuelson in 1922. It is perhaps the fastest-growing, all-family competitive sport.
Following the drug scandal at the 1988 OLYMPIC GAMES in Seoul, when Ben Johnson was stripped of his gold medal after testing positive for steroids, the federal government established the Commission of Inquiry Into the Use of Drugs and Banned Practices Intended to Increase Athletic Performance.
"The hockey players are coming to Vancouver," said Evan Ince, who is three and was a bit overwhelmed last week. Celebration whirled around him at Vancouver's General Motors Place arena in the wild moments after the International Olympic Committee voted to stage the 2010 Winter Games in little Evan's backyard.
The road north from Vancouver to Whistler is paved with good intentions, but not nearly enough passing lanes. The Sea-to-Sky Highway winds high above Howe Sound, past Bowen, Gambier and Anvil islands; past ferries and freighters and barge-burdened tugs; past the chill plunge of Shannon Falls and fly-sized rock climbers high up the brooding face of the Stawamus Chief at Squamish.
Her name is Rhona Martin of Dunlop, Scotland. On ice, she barks orders like a gunnery sergeant, and slings stones like a giant killer. She lists her occupation as housewife, and her hobbies - when not crushing the gold medal hopes of Kelley Law's dream team - as swimming and working out.
Canadians have never needed banana peels as a cure for rare displays of over-confidence; ice works well enough. It was ice last week on the speed-skating oval and in Salt Lake City's figure-skating arena that momentarily flattened Canada's self-described "best ever" Winter Olympic team.