Saturday, February 18, 2006

Shani Davis becomes first Black to win ind winter gold.

Sports: Bryant Gumbel says what the hell?

TURIN, Italy (AP) -- Shani Davis knew what he was doing. Davis became the first black to win an individual gold medal in Winter Olympic history on Saturday, capturing the men's 1,000-meter speedskating race. Joey Cheek made it a 1-2 American finish, adding a silver to his victory in the 500. Erben Wennemars of the Netherlands captured the bronze. Chad Hedrick, skating the weakest of his individual events, put up an early time that stood until Davis bested it in the 19th of 21 pairs with a time of 1 minute, 8.89 seconds. Four other skaters passed Hedrick as well, leaving the Texan in sixth place -- still an impressive showing considering he was skating the 1,000 for only the seventh time in his career. Davis came under scrutiny for skipping the team pursuit -- especially when the Hedrick-led squad was knocked out in the quarterfinals, doomed by a slow skater who might not have been on the ice if Davis was available. But Davis, world record holder in the 1,000, wanted to focus on his signature event. It certainly paid off.
From left to right, slver medalist Joey Cheek of the United States, gold medalist Shani Davis of the United States and bronze medalist Erben Wennemars of the Netherlands smile during the flower ceremony after the men's 1000 meter speedskating race at Oval Lingotto during the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy, Saturday, Feb. 18, 2006. (AP Photo/Dusan Vranic)

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