Sochi weather

Sochi ‘being stabilized’ after heavy rain causes state of emergency (photos)

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Russian authorities declared the host city of the 2014 Winter Olympics in a state of emergency following floods and mudslides late Tuesday.

The Emergency Situations Ministry told media outlets that the situation was “being stabilized” on Wednesday.

The ministry said about 1,800 of its workers helped clean streets and pump out water after local rivers overflowed following heavy rain, according to The Associated Press. The water level was receding, traffic returned to normal and the Sochi airport and railway station were functioning normally, according to the AP.

Previously, the floods caused power outages and evacuations and cut off bridges, according to the Moscow Times. Puddles were knee-high, according to Reuters. The rain was expected to continue through Wednesday.

Russian Olympic Committee president Alexander Zhukov said he had no doubt the city will be fully ready for the Games. The opening ceremony is Feb. 7.

A highway leading to Alpine venues was flooded by 8 feet of water, according to Reuters. Here’s a photo posted by the Moscow Times from a highway leading to Olympic venues.

Here are more photos from social media:

Tropical-Winter Games #rain #raining #sochi #floating #toomuch

A post shared by danidani (@danidani) on

#олимпийскийвокзал #вокзал #адлер #сочи #sochi #adler #bingoboom_sochi #потоп #сезон

A post shared by Bingo Boom 🎲💸💶💰🎱 (@bingoboom_sochi) on

Meanwhile, the precipitation turned to snow in the mountains, the Alpine venues’ first significant snowfall of the season. The International Olympic Committee coordination commission is in Sochi for a final inspection.

Photos: Omega’s special edition Sochi 2014 watches

Francesco Friedrich wins historic fourth straight bobsled world title

German bob team, Francesco Friedrich, right, and Thorsten Margis, celebrate their victory  after the men's  two-man bob race at the  Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Championships at Lake Koenigssee, Germany, Sunday Feb. 19. 2017. (Angelika Warmuth/dpa via AP)
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KOENIGSSEE, Germany (AP) — Germany’s Francesco Friedrich was again fastest in both runs to extend his lead and beat Justin Kripps of Canada for his fourth straight world championship in two-man bobsled on Sunday.

Friedrich, who held a 0.52-lead from Saturday’s opening heats, clocked 49.17 seconds and then 48.94 with his brakeman Thorsten Margis for a combined time of 3 minutes, 16.71 seconds after four runs — 1.20 ahead of Kripps and Jesse Lumsden.

The 26-year-old Friedrich says “We were simply unbeatable this week.”

Germany’s Johannes Lochner was 1.25 back in third with Joshua Bluhm, ahead of Oskars Kibermanis and Matiss Miknis of Latvia, Nick Poloniato and Neville Wright of Canada, and Oskars Melbardis and Janis Strenga of Latvia.

American pilot Steven Holcomb was seventh with Carlo Valdes, 1.68 back.

A skeleton and bobsled team competition was scheduled later Sunday.

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Marcel Hirscher reclaims slalom title, wraps up ‘perfect worlds’

ST MORITZ, SWITZERLAND - FEBRUARY 17:  Gold medalist Marcel Hirscher of Austria celebrates on the podium following the Men's Giant Slalom during the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships on February 17, 2017 in St Moritz, Switzerland.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
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Austrian Marcel Hirscher reclaimed the slalom world title, wrapping up what he called “the perfect world championships” with two golds and one silver in St. Moritz, Switzerland, on Sunday.

Hirscher, the five-time reigning World Cup overall champion, prevailed by .68 of a second combining two runs. Fellow Austrian Manuel Feller earned silver, followed by German Felix Neureuther, .93 behind.

Hirscher’s biggest slalom rival, Henrik Kristoffersen, was a disappointing fourth, giving Norway fourth-place finishers in all five men’s events at worlds.

The top American was David Chodounsky in 12th.

Full Results | Race Replay

Hirscher led by .43 after the morning run and had the third-fastest second run. He finished worlds with golds in the giant slalom and slalom and silver in the super combined, missing gold by .01. All that despite entering worlds sick, reportedly spending days ill in bed.

He said that super combined silver, and especially his maiden GS title, took the pressure off Sunday.

“It was super easy for me, mentally, to [go] into this race,” Hirscher said. “It doesn’t matter if I straddle at the first gate. The only thing that wouldn’t be fine is skiing slow.”

Hirscher is en route to his sixth straight World Cup overall title this season. No other man has won that many, consecutive or not. He previously won the slalom world title in 2013, then was upset at the Sochi Olympics, taking silver behind countryman Mario Matt, who at 34 became the oldest Olympic Alpine champion.

Hirscher led the 2015 Worlds slalom by .88 after the first run, then straddled a gate near the end of the second run while his lead was evaporating.

Hirscher has already proven his excellence on the World Cup and world championships stages. It’s PyeongChang where he must deliver, since he lacks Olympic gold. Hirscher is only 27 years old, but he has cast doubt on going all the way to the 2022 Winter Games.

Feller, 24, took surprise silver without a World Cup podium to his name.

Neureuther earned his third straight world slalom medal, but none have been gold.

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