Michelle Kwan’s Olympics End Before They Start

You have to feel for the woman. The Olympic gold medal dreams are gone for the former silver and bronze medalist, although she was considered any extremely long shot for any medal during these Olympics.

Michelle Kwan’s decade-long hunt for Olympic gold came to a tearful end on Sunday after the American pulled out of the Winter Olympics with a groin strain. One of the most successful skaters of all time, she owns a record-equaling nine U.S. national titles and five world crowns.

A groin injury kept her out of competing on the grand prix circuit this season and she had to petition the U.S. selection committee to even book her ticket to the Games after missing last month’s nationals.

Although the top three usually gain Olympic berths, Kwan was controversially given the nod ahead of American bronze medallist Emily Hughes, sister of Sarah, thanks to her proven track record.

She arrived in Turin feeling she had sufficiently recovered from her niggles but her optimism lasted just a few minutes into a practice session on Saturday when she fell over attempting a triple flip, and instantly realized all was not well.

Her problems on ice seem to be a direct result of the new judging system that was introduced following the 2002 pairs scandal. Her graceful lines and artistry on ice once allowed her to dominate the sport. Now it does not even merit a podium finish.

Kwan’s dream ends in tears [Reuters]