I'm not sure what to think about an aspiring Venezuelan skier.
Adrian Solano wobbled nervously backward as he exited the starting gate at the Lahti2017 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships this week. He fumbled into the white powder after sliding down a small hill. And he tried awkwardly walking up an incline while others raced by him.
By Thursday, sports commentators circulating videos of his comedic cross-country performance online had dubbed him the worst skier alive.
. . .
Solano’s saga has hit a nerve among Venezuelans and angered the country’s highest officials, who are denouncing France for deporting the athlete in January while he was trying to get to Sweden to train on snow. Airport migration officials in Paris allegedly doubted his story, thinking his journey to the slopes was a ploy to leave his beleaguered country.
“We will issue a strong statement to the French government for their affront against a Venezuelan athlete,” Venezuela’s foreign minister, Delcy Rodriguez, wrote in a tweet Wednesday.
Stuck back in Caracas, Solano’s supporters started a GoFundMe page that brought him to Finland just in time to compete.
The only problem: He hadn’t practiced skiing on snow, only on wheels in Venezuela’s scorching heat.
There's more at the link.
Here's a video of him at the championships.
I'm familiar with the movie 'Cool Runnings', about the wannabe Jamaican bobsleigh team that drew first hilarity, then respectful applause at the 1988 Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Canada.
However, they appear to have been a model of professionalism compared to Señor Solano. In particular, entering a competition at this level without even once having skied on snow . . . that's just too much to swallow. Even a few days' practice beforehand would have helped, and surely that's not too much to ask?