Israel’s lone Olympic skier Virgile Vandeput didn’t even make it to the starting gate of Wednesday’s Giant Slalom competition at the Sochi Games.
The 19-year-old Belgium native suffered a leg injury during training on Tuesday and failed a fitness test ahead of the race on Wednesday morning.
Vandeput now faces a race against time to be fit for Saturday’s Slalom event, which is regarded as his specialty.
Vandeput hopes to finish among the top half of skiers on Saturday to cap the Israeli delegation’s showing in Sochi on a positive note.
Israel’s three figure skaters achieved their targets, with Alexei Bychenko ending the men’s event in 21st place last Friday, while Evgeni Krasnopolski and Andrea Davidovich finished the pairs’ figure skating competition in 15th place last Wednesday.
Short track speed skater Vladislav Bykanov experienced an Olympics to forget, failing to advance past the heats in all three of his events.
The 24-year-old, who moved to Israel from Ukraine in 1994, fell short in the 500- meter, 1,000m and 1,500m events, coming closest in the latter when he missed out on a place in the semifinals by 76 hundredths of a second.
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