Skier Kildow OK after crash

THE BALTIMORE SUN

Don't rule Lindsey Kildow out of these Winter Games just yet, or even out of tomorrow's downhill event. Despite a scary crash that got her airlifted to the hospital yesterday, the St. Paul, Minn., native hasn't given up any of her starting spots.

"Lindsey is doing remarkably well considering the high-speed crash, and the initial on-scene reports," her agent, Sue Dorf, said via e-mail last night. "We'll know a lot more about her condition tomorrow."

Kildow was unavailable for comment.

The Americans' top-ranked downhiller was training for tomorrow's downhill event on the San Sicario course when she crossed her skis just before going airborne at the top of a jump, said U.S. Alpine coach Jesse Hunt. Her fall was so severe, spectators and competitors collectively gasped.

Initial reports were sketchy, and there was a rumor that she had broken her back. But U.S. Alpine ski team physician William Sterett said the damage was limited to severe bruising on her hip.

It wasn't the only crash of the day.

The terrifying crash of American luger Samantha Retrosi provided a scary reminder of how dangerous riding a sled at 80 mph can be.

"It was a bad crash. ... But the bottom line is that she's going to be OK," U.S. team leader Fred Zimny said.

Retrosi, a 20-year-old from Saranac Lake, N.Y., competing in her first Winter Games, sustained a concussion and cut her chin in a wicked spill on the first day of women's luge when several of the world's top racers failed to stay upright.

Though she suffered short-term memory loss and is out of the Games, "everything is looking good," said Ed Ryan, the U.S. Olympic Committee's director of sports medicine. "All of her scans have come back normal."

Retrosi was taken by helicopter to CTO Hospital in Turin where she will be re-evaluated this morning, Ryan said, adding that "we expect her to be discharged" at that time.

Zimny said that by the time she was transported to an on-site medical facility, Retrosi was conscious and complained of knee pain.

"She doesn't remember the crash, which is probably a good thing," he said.

Hemoglobin testing -- Four suspended cross-country skiers will get their chance at an Olympic medal, passing new hemoglobin tests administered after serving five-day suspensions. German cross-country skier Evi Sachenbacher and the two Americans - Kikkan Randall and Leif Zimmerman - were among the four who were retested. The identity of the fourth skier was not immediately released.

Drug testing -- All 161 drug tests taken since the athletes' village opened Jan. 31 have come out clean, the IOC said.

U.S. Delegation -- President Bush tapped Rudolph Giuliani, former New York City mayor and a potential presidential candidate in 2008, to lead the U.S. delegation at the closing ceremonies of the Turin Olympics. Also named to the delegation were race car driver Mario Andretti; Ronald P. Spogli, the U.S. ambassador to Italy; and Dr. A. Kenneth Ciongoli, the chairman and CEO of the National Italian-American Foundation.

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