What to watch and when: Day five highlights

Click to follow
The Independent Online

*Pick of the day: Snowboard cross

If its debut in Turin four years ago is anything to go by, this is an event not to be missed. With a basic need for speed offset by an apparent urge among competitors to show off, it's the archetypal PlayStation sport. In 2006 the American favourite, Lindsey Jacobellis, built a commanding lead in the final – the gold was hers – then she decided to showboat over the last jump, ended up sprawled in an embarrassed heap as her gold disappeared in a puff of disturbed snow

Snowboard cross begins as a contest against the clock but the time to watch is when it gets down to the last 32. Then the real racing begins. The athletes compete in heats of four, the top two advancing until four finalists are left. The course is rutted and fast, dotted with jumps, bumps and turns. The fastest wins, as long as they keep their feet on the ground.

It represents Britain's first real chance of a medal, through the thoroughly grounded Zoe Gillings (above). The 24-year-old from the Isle of Man has recovered from a career threatening injury to enter the Games ranked five in the world. Her preparations have been marred by the collapse of Snowsport GB, which left her short of funding and much-needed training time. She can also claim the quirkiest biographical detail among Team GB; her family has a strain of rhubarb named after them. (18.00, final 20.15 BBC, Eurosport)

*Best of the rest:


Dave Murdoch's team will be the most unpopular men in Vancouver should they deny the hosts a gold Canada sees as theirs by right. Murdoch opens the campaign against Sweden. (17.00 BBC, Eurosport)

Alpine skiing (Men's super combined)

Austria's dependable Benjamin Raich is the man to beat; Bode Miller is the man who could beat him; Ed Drake and Dave Ryding provide some outside British interest. (18.00 & 21.30 BBC, Eurosport)

Ice hockey (Men's preliminary round)

The one a nation has been waiting for. Canada begin their campaign against Norway and nothing other than a thumping victory will do. (00.30 BBC, Eurosport)