Wiki Actu en

July 8, 2011

Finnish Olympic champion skier Mika Myllylä found dead

Finnish Olympic champion skier Mika Myllylä found dead

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Friday, July 8, 2011

Finland
Other stories from Finland
  • 28 November 2014: Finland passes law allowing same-sex marriage
  • 29 June 2014: Medal-seeking Spanish men arrive at 2014 Goalball World Championships
  • 26 June 2014: Belgian men’s goalball team departs for Finland for World Championships
  • 10 March 2014: Wheelchair curling enters third day at 2014 Winter Paralympics
  • 9 October 2013: Japanese adults rank high in literacy and numeracy in OECD survey
…More articles here
Location of Finland

A map showing the location of Finland

To write, edit, start or view other articles on Finland, see the Finland Portal
Flag of Finland.svg

Myllyä in 2001

Finnish cross-country skier Mika Myllylä, a six-time Olympic medalist, including one gold, has been found dead. He was 41. Police said he was alone at his apartment in Kokkola and no crime is suspected. His cause of death remains unclear.

Born 1969 in Oulu, Myllylä won Olympic silver at the 50km cross-country race in Lillehammer, Norway in 1994, and gold at the 30km cross-country race in Nagano, Japan in 1998. These two Games netted him four bronze medals. The 1999 World Championship in Austria saw him win three gold medals and one silver. This and other World Championships saw him gain a total of nine World Championship medals.

It was at the 2001 World Championships in his native Finland that things went wrong for Myllylä. A Finnish Ski Association bag was accidentally left at a petrol station close to Helsinki‘s International Airport; it was handed in to police, who discovered needles, infusion bags and a prescription for banned drug Hemohes (HES) signed off by a team doctor.

HES had been banned the previous year by the International Olympic Committee because it reduced hemoglobin concentration and oxygen-carrying red blood cell counts; this allowed it to mask the presence of banned drug erythropoietin (EPO), which raises red blood cell production. Last year Myllylä provided a court with a sworn statement confirming he had used EPO in the decade preceding the controversy.

Myllylä and five other Finnish skiers tested positive for HES in what became a national scandal; the Finnish Ski Association’s president, and the team’s doctors and coaches left or were sacked. Myllylä was handed a two-year sporting ban, after which he returned to competitive skiing; although he twice won the national championships, he gave up in 2005.

Cquote1.svg A champion has passed into eternity Cquote2.svg

—Jari Piirainen

These events changed Myllylä, according to longtime friend and national cross-country skiing association chair Reijo Alakoski. “He should be remembered as a great athlete… Mika changed completely as a person on the day his doping was made public. It has been sad to watch his descent and anguish from the sidelines over the last ten years.” His passing “is a dark day in the history of Ostrobothnian cross-country skiing,” said Alakoski.

Since then his personal life has been difficult. Drink-driving convictions came in 2008 and 2010 as Myllylä fought alcoholism, and he was thrice convicted of assault. He and his wife Suvi were divorced in 2007.

“A champion has passed into eternity,” according to ex-Finnish Ski Association CEO Jari Piirainen. “Although Mika will of course be remembered for his sporting achievements, we should of course remember that he was also a father.” Piirainen also reflected on media attention towards Myllylä: “Maybe it’s just… how much pressure we put on our idols and sportsmen. And how do we deal with them when they are at the top – do we accept that people are people and accept that everyone makes mistakes, and forgive them?”

Cquote1.svg Everyone who felt joy at the success of the team now feels betrayed Cquote2.svg

—Suvi Linden

Piirainen himself was caught up in the doping scandal after a news story into Finnish doping led to a libel case. Piirainen’s statements in court led to him facing a fraud trial, but he was cleared.

“My heart is broken,” Myllylä said when his doping was exposed “and there is no way to describe the amount of my agony with words. I kneel down, admit my defeat and beg for peace for my soul.” The then-culture minister, Suvi Linden, said at the time “Everyone who felt joy at the success of the team now feels betrayed.”

Myllylä fathered three children, whom he is survived by.



Sources

Bookmark-new.svg


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

Cassini spacecraft captures large storm on Saturn

Cassini spacecraft captures large storm on Saturn

From Wikinews, the free news source you can write!
Jump to: navigation, search

Friday, July 8, 2011

Space
Related articles

ScoCen.jpg
Collaborate!
  • Pillars of Wikinews writing
  • Writing an article

Saturn showing the Great White Spot.
Image: spacetelescope.org.

On Wednesday NASA released details of a giant convective storm on Saturn gathered from the international Cassini spacecraft orbiting the planet. The storm, known as a “Great White Spot“, is around 6,200 miles (10,000 kilometers) wide and visible from Earth.

The White Spot storms have been observed since 1876 and occur approximately every 30 years; only five previous storms have been seen in the last 137 years. The first signs were detected on December 5, 2010 by instruments aboard the Cassini spacecraft when it recorded lightening outbursts in a small bright area on Saturn’s northern half. The area was tracked by the spacecraft and by astronomers on the ground through telescopes. It was later identified as a brewing storm during the start of Saturn spring. Its size and intensity grew until its tail wrapped around the planet. It now covers 1.5 billion square miles.

Cassini has been monitoring storms on Saturn since the craft arrived there in 2004. This is the most intense yet seen and was observed in unprecedented detail, according to the journal Nature in two papers published Thursday. The storm is 500 times larger than the biggest storm on Saturn monitored by Cassini. The spacecraft’s instruments showed the rate of the nearly continuous lightning flashes was up to ten times more frequent than during past storms it has monitored. This electrical activity is 10,000 times stronger than lightning bursts measured on Earth.

Saturn’s huge storm is bright due to its gaseous content, scientists say.

A key question is the source of the energy powering Great White Spots. Originally researchers thought the storms’ power might come from the sun. However, researcher Agustin Sánchez-Lavega told Space.com the new data showed that to make sense of the cloud patterns, the winds must “extend deep into the ‘weather layer’ … where the main clouds reside.” Since sunlight does not reach this depth, this “points to the action of an internal heat source as the power for the winds.”



Related news

Sources

External links

Bookmark-new.svg


This text comes from Wikinews. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 licence. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikinews.

Powered by WordPress