BEIJING -- The IOC's top medical officer says Beijing's air quality is better than expected, although a study shows there are risks to athletes in outdoor endurance events and conditions may be less than ideal during this summer's Olympic Games.
Arne Ljungqvist, chairman of the International Olympic Committee's Medical Commission, said Monday that an analysis by four independent experts of data supplied by Beijing organizers found heat and humidity might be a greater threat to athletes than the city's noxious air.
IOC President Jacques Rogge has repeatedly said that outdoor endurance events would be postponed if the air quality is poor, which would be a huge embarrassment for organizers hoping to feature a clean, modern city.
Full article at ESPN.com.
Just when you think the Olympics are too corporatized to bother watching anymore, Beijing comes along. Oh, I'm sure NBC will once again manage to ruin their coverage of it by focusing more on the talking heads and "human-interest" side of the games instead of the actual contests, but I think that the pollution, the lack of civil rights, and the ongoing protests with the oppressed Tibetans can really combine to add some drama.
I'm very excited about the potential for someone to unfurl a string of Tibetan prayer-flags while taking a victory lap around the track (of course, we can't expect an American athlete to be this brave; Nike wouldn't like it). Or just imagine if someone literally coughed up a lung during the triathlon? Or maybe Katie Couric will
get deported for uploading footage to Youtube?
With possiblities like this, this whole Summer Olympics thing just might be worth waking up at 3am to watch after all.