CALGARY, FEB. 27 -- Wild weather whooshed upon the Winter Olympics again today, with gusting 35-mph winds forcing yet another postponement in the 70-meter ski jumping portion of the Nordic combined event and opening the possibility the event might be canceled.
Jerry Joynt, vice president/communications for the Calgary organizing committee, said the ski jump was rescheduled for 8 a.m. MST Sunday (10 EST), with the 15-kilometer cross country ski portion moved back to 3:30 p.m. (5:30), four hours before the start of the closing ceremonies. Mikkel Dob-long of Norway, the technical delegate for the event, told the Associated Press that if weather conditions again force cancellation of the ski jumping, the entire Nordic combined event would be scrubbed and no medals would be awarded.
Doblong said the jump cannot be delayed any more than three hours Sunday because the competitors need time to make the one-hour drive to Canmore for the cross country skiing portion.
Joynt said he would not speculate on what might happen if winds again force postponement. He cited the forecast of 12-mph winds at 8 a.m., which would allow the competition to go on. "I don't believe in dealing with hypothetical cases," he said when asked what would happen if conditions don't improve.
"The IOC still considers that the closing ceremonies will take place with all events being held," IOC spokesperson Michele Verdier said. The only time the Games have been extended was 1932 in Lake Placid, N.Y., when the four-man bobsled was run a day after the closing ceremonies. Blood Under Study
The head of the International Olympic Committee's medical commission said today there has been no evidence here of blood doping -- adding extra red blood cells to the body to improve performance -- but admitted there is still no proven method for testing.
In a prepared statement, Prince Alexander de Merode said "a reliable detection does not yet exist," although the IOC has helped fund research in Sweden toward developing a method to determine if the blood hemoglobin content of an athlete has been manipulated.
The medical commission also released a code of ethics for IOC-accredited laboratories that includes a warning to labs not to assist athletes in determining when to stop taking banned drugs to avoid detection.Moving Up, to 45th
Mary Pat Wilson and Kevin Wilson, who grew up in Middleburg, Va., and represented Puerto Rico at the Winter Olympics, had a tough two weeks at Nakiska. Mary Pat Wilson did not finish the women's slalom and was disqualified in ladies giant slalom. Her brother placed 61st in giant slalom out of more than 100 competitors and did not finish the men's Super G race. Today, he was 45th in the men's slalom, the final Alpine skiing event of the Games.