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2014 Winter Olympics

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IOC and ISU should eliminate consolation events

Kali Christ, Brittany Schussler, Ivanie Blondin
Kali Christ, Brittany Schussler, Ivanie Blondin
Clive Mason, Getty Images

According to the Sochi 2014 website, the Netherlands dominated the men's team pursuit and women's team pursuit long track speed skating events on Saturday.

The Netherlands posted an Olympic record time of 2:58.05 in the women's team pursuit and 3:37.71 in the men's team pursuit to easily win both competitions.

However there were many races on Saturday that were significantly irrelevant. In the women's team pursuit, the Canadian team of Ivanie Blondin of Ottawa, Ontario, Kali Christ of Regina, Saskatchewan and Brittany Schussler of Winnipeg beat the United States in the fifth place race. There was also a race for seventh.

The consolation races in the team pursuit should be eliminated at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang. These races are not spectator friendly and weaken the overall level of interest in the sport. Once a team has been eliminated from a chance of winning an Olympic medal, they should not have to compete again, but that is the ridiculous expectation that currently exists for the skaters.

There are also consolation B finals in short track speed skating, but this final has some importance because on the rare occasion there are multiple athletes disqualified in the A final, the B final champion has a chance to win a medal.

The International Ice Hockey Federation got rid of the pointless consolation games for hockey at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Turin for the complete betterment of the tournament. Let's hope the ISU follows the IIHF lead at future Olympic Winter Games.

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