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Contemporary Wycinanka design by Helena Mazek

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Malysz Wins Silver at Winter Olympics

32-year-old Adam Malysz was the first of Poland's Olympic team to win a medal in Vancouver.

The men's downhill was supposed to be the first medal of these games, but it was postponed because of warm, wet weather in Whistler. That put the ski jumpers at the head of the list. Malysz took silver medal

Adam Malysz first rose to fame nearly a decade ago, when he won the Four Hills tournament, considered the annual Super Bowl of ski jumping... That victory made him an enormous star in his native Poland.

He has struggled to find his best form on the World Cup circuit so far this season with just one podium finish. However, the Polish veteran has a habit of performing well on big occasions, winning a silver and bronze medal at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics and taking four world championship titles between 2001 and 2007.

Poland’s Olympic Tradition

Poland is one of 12 countries to have participated in every Olympic Winter Games since 1924. It has won eight medals (one gold, three silver, four bronze).

Wojciech Fortuna won the country's only gold, using a spectacular first jump to clinch the ski jumping large hill title in Sapporo 1972.

Franciszek Gasienica-Gron won the country's first medal, claiming the bronze in Nordic combined in Cortina d'Ampezzo 1956.

The introduction of women's speed skating in 1960 allowed 1500m competitors Elwira Seroczynska (silver) and Helena Pilejczyk (bronze) to become the first and only women to win medals for Poland.

Ski jumper Adam Malysz won both of Poland's medals in 2002 (one silver, one bronze).

In 2006, biathlete Tomasz Sikora took silver in the 15km and cross-country skier Justyna Kowalczyk took bronze in the women's 30km event.