AP PHOTOS: Olympic pursuits of glory, captured in a blur

ByThe Associated Press
February 10, 2022, 5:25 AM
A Russian athlete trains during cross-country skiing session at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, in Zhangjiakou, China. (AP Photo/John Locher)
A Russian athlete trains during cross-country skiing session at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, in Zhangjiakou, China. (AP Photo/John Locher)
The Associated Press

BEIJING -- Six days of Olympics, gone in a blur. No surprise, of course, given the way these athletes move.

Racing around the cross-country course in Zhangjiakou, floodlights keeping the track clear at dusk. Or blitzing down the luge track, a colorful rocket on white ice.

Even in curling, speed is everything. Controlling the stone's pace takes focus — blocking out all else — and it shows on the steady face of U.S. curler Christopher Plys.

There's plenty to be distracted by, too. The replica Great Wall along the slopestyle run is quite a sight. For human catapults like Japanese snowboarder Ruki Tobita, an aerial view is always preferred.

Coming down the ramp at Big Air Shougang, Swedish freestyle skier Oliwer Magnusson isn't thinking much about the shuttered steel mill around him. Moments before launching some 20 feet skyward, his goggled eyes are fixed straight ahead.

Surely, these Games have been a blur for Kamila Valieva. In an Associated Press photo from Sunday, the Russian's right hand holds her left foot behind her head as she spins, an effort that earned her team gold. By Thursday, it seemed the 15-year-old might never receive that medal, not amid reports that she'd tested positive for a banned substance.

Drama surrounding other medals has remained on the playing surface. Like Hungary's Liu Shaoang, chasing a stride behind America's Andrew Heo in the short track speedskating mixed team realy. Or the ground closing in on German ski jumper Juliane Seyfarth, a race against gravity as much as her comeptition.

A lifetime of work for most, executed in a blink. Sometimes, seeing that most clearly requires knowing what to blur.

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More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/winter-games and https://twitter.com/AP—Sports

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