Reindeer

Reindeer offered as prizes at Alpine skiing World Cup stop

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In 2005, Lindsey Vonn won a downhill race in Val d’Isere, France. Her prize? A cow that she named Olympe.

This year, a reindeer is up for grabs.

The second stop of the Alpine skiing World Cup tour will be Levi, Finland, on Nov. 16-17, where the slalom race winners will receive money, flowers and a Lapland reindeer.

The winners will name their own reindeers, after which they can follow their reindeers’ movements and adventures in Lapland during winter via pictures and social media. The winners have also an opportunity to greet their reindeers always during the World Cup Levi event.

Since the race is slalom, Vonn won’t be adding to her collection. She skipped Levi last year and said she does not plan on racing slalom events this season. It is her weakest discipline.

But another American may be the favorite in Levi. That’s Mikaela Shiffrin, 18, the reigning world champion and World Cup champion in the event. Shiffrin placed third in Levi last season.

Shiffrin also won the limited use of a red Audi RS5 sport coupe in a post-race party drawing last season.

(h/t @alexgoldberger)

U.S. Olympic snowboarding hopeful lives out of his car (video)

WATCH LIVE: Big Air at Fenway — 8:30 p.m. ET

Fenway Big Air
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Fenway Park will host some of the world’s best freeskiers in the one-of-a-kind Big Air at Fenway, live on NBC Sports Live Extra on Friday night.

Big air skiers will descend from a ramp that’s four times higher than the Green Monster inside the hallowed Boston Red Sox home.

Ski big air is most like slopestyle of the current Olympic disciplines, except skiers get one jump per run.

WATCH LIVE: Big Air at Fenway — 8:30 p.m. ET

On Thursday, Canadian Max Parrot and American Julia Marino won the snowboard big air competitions at Fenway Park.

Big Air at Fenway coverage will conclude with an NBC show on Saturday at 5 p.m. ET.

MORE: Olympic champ suffers concussion at Big Air at Fenway practice

Lillehammer Youth Winter Olympics open with homages to 1994

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In an homage to the Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympics, Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway lit the Lillehammer Youth Winter Olympic cauldron to cap the Opening Ceremony on Friday night.

The princess’ father, Crown Prince Haakon, lit the 1994 Olympic cauldron in a very similar fashion (video here). Princess Ingrid Alexandra was born in 2004.

The Opening Ceremony, held outdoors at a ski jump (same venue as 1994) in sub-freezing temperatures, included a speech from International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach.

“I’m just a little bit too old to compete in the YOG,” Bach said, urging listeners to use the hashtag #IloveYOG during the nine-day Winter Games.

The ceremony included Olympic legends, such as 2010 figure skating gold medalist Yuna Kim and eight-time Olympic cross-country champion Bjorn Daehlie carrying the Olympic flag.

Marit Bjoergen, a 10-time Olympic medalist cross-country skier, handed the Olympic flame to the princess.

NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra will air coverage of the Opening Ceremony on Saturday at 12:30 a.m. ET, plus daily coverage throughout the Winter Games. A full broadcast schedule is here.

MORE: Two years to Pyeongchang: Updates on U.S. Olympic medalists from Sochi