Hometown talent; Truckee athletes headed to Olympics | SierraSun.com

Hometown talent; Truckee athletes headed to Olympics

As the 1998 Winter Olympic Games get under way in Nagano, Japan, tomorrow evening, Truckee and North Tahoe will send four talented skiers and a snowboarder to compete against the best in the world.

Following in the Olympic footsteps – and downhill turns – of past local legends such Jimmie Heuga and Kristin Krone, the upcoming Winter Games feature Truckee residents Daron Rahlves, Marcus Nash and Candace Cable. Squaw Valley’s Jonny Moseley and Adam Hostetter of Tahoe City also will travel to Nagano to vie for gold as millions of television viewers watch the more than 3,000 athletes from 83 nations, each searching for his or her moment of glory.

South Tahoe’s Jonna Mendes will compete in three Olympic events for the U.S. Alpine Ski Team.

The Winter Games have produced the stuff of which legends are made; Tommy Moe’s 1994 gold-medal run, Dan Jansen’s heart-tugging and inspirational gold-earning speed skating race, the 1960 and 1980 U.S. hockey teams defeating the Russians, who were still known as the Soviets at the time.

Rahlves, America’s fastest Super G and slalom racer, and seventh fastest in the world, is considered a dark horse, yet still a major contender for the gold in his events. Confident, young and experienced, Rahlves will face his toughest battle yet against Austria’s Hermann Maier, currently the fastest Super G and slalom skier in the world.

Nash returns to the Olympics after a 65th-place finish in 1994 at Lillehammer in cross-country skiing.

More mature than four years ago and raring to get a hold of the competition, Nash fights an uphill battle against the great names in cross-country: Finland, Sweden and Norway.

Though America still has no gold in cross-country, the team headed by Nash is widely considered the best the US has ever produced. A 20-year resident of Truckee and Tahoe, Cable is one of the fastest disabled ski-skiers in the world.

She will return to the Paralympics in March to prove she is the fastest. A story of courage and determination to her credit, Cable has risen to the top of both track and field racing and sit-skiing, holding many world records in the former.

The Olympics begin tomorrow, with coverage of opening ceremonies starting at 8 p.m. on CBS, which will provide 128 hours of Olympic action.

Cross-country skiing begins for Nash almost immediately, on Saturday. Races will be shown Feb. 8, 9, 11, 12, (all 8 p.m.) 14, (7 p.m.), 18 (8 p.m.) and 22 (9 a.m.).

Rahlves’ alpine slalom coverage is Feb. 11 (8 p.m.). The Super G, with Rahlves coming out of the gate, begins Feb. 12 (8 p.m.).

Freestyle skiing begins Feb. 16 (8 p.m.) and continues through Feb. 17 (8 p.m.).

Each night, highlights of the day’s events can be seen at 11:35 p.m. on the Olympic Late Night Show on CBS.

Coverage of the Paralympics begins March 5. See the sports section for profiles of Truckee’s Olympic lineup.

Sierra Sun E-mail: sun@tahoe.com

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