American luger Emily Sweeney silences Winter Olympics crowd with horrific crash

American luger Emily Sweeney silences Winter Olympics crowd with horrific crash

"I know I caught a good amount of air going in to (turn) 12, and I just couldn't stop it", Sweeney told NBC after the accident. She walked away gingerly to relieved applause.

The team doctor said Sweeney, 24, suffered bumps and bruises and no broken bones.

A frightening scene unfolded Tuesday night as American Emily Sweeney spun out of control during her fourth run and tumbled down the track, causing a stoppage of play during the finals of the women's singles luge competition.

Sweeney lost control around Curve 9, the track's most treacherous spot, and then began careening all over the track.

Many in the crowd looked at the monitors, horrified.


Sweeney is in her first Olympics. Crashes, however, have not come as often as they did in the 2006 and 2010 Games, both of which left athletes openly complaining about track safety.

"What we were concerned about is whether we would see her walking at all again, the best medical teams got to her and after a number of minutes the good news Emily is up on her feet".

Erin Hamlin, who carried the United States flag during the Opening Ceremony andn who won bronze in Sochi, finished sixth in her final Olympics.

When asked if she would return and make another run at the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing, Sweeney was unsure. Teammate Dajana Eitberger earned silver, .367 seconds behind Geisenberger's four-run combined time of 3 minutes, 5.232 seconds. But it is a night such as this one that USA lugers say is the best opportunity to grow the sport - by winning medals, by grabbing the spotlight.

Only 20 women from the original field of 30 advanced to the final two runs. The Eighth Army brought about 70 soldiers and dependents to the event, 100 miles from Camp Humphreys, to cheer on Sweeney and fellow soldier-competitors.

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