Legendary sports moment can take on a ‘World’ of its own for Slovenian athlete Vinko Bogataj

If there’s one particular detail sports activities lovers close to the globe have in common, it’s the indelible reminiscences that the video games by themselves have provided us.

If there is just one matter sports admirers all around the entire world have in typical, it’s the indelible recollections that the games themselves have supplied us.

Often even memories we would instead forget about.

But for a single previous athlete, his legendary sporting activities minute took on a “world” of its very own.

It was March 21, 1970 at the Entire world Ski Level of competition in Oberstdorf, West Germany. Former Slovenian ski jumper Vinko Bogataj’s 1st soar of the day was just an indicator of what was to arrive.

“I was quite confident and positive following the initially leap. Every person was leaping with a bit of reservation, I felt incredibly confident and top rated of type,” claimed Bogataj.

In advance of Bogataj could make his next operate of the day, the weather conditions instantly took a transform for the worst. Substantial winds and ice built up on the conclude-run, forcing officials to shorten the jump.

“I finished up waiting for about 15-20 minutes at the top of the close-operate. I was chilly, I was not bodily there anymore,” explained Bogataj.

He fell on his very first bounce.

“After the initially spherical and I saw young Vinko Bogataj bounce, I said correct then and there, this child is an incident ready to come about, it certain occurred,” claimed previous Olympic ski jumper Art Devlin.

“As I obtained to the radius some thing took my ski. In my head, I considered I had more than enough time to the lip of the end-operate, but I was about 100km (65mph),” Bogataj mentioned. “From that issue onward, there is no additional memory about what was going on.”

Bogataj was carried off and taken to a area medical center, the good news is sustaining only a concussion. But as generally is the case in existence, a person man’s reduction, is another’s obtain.

“After our initial shock, it did not just take us very long to want to have that catastrophe turn into the ‘Agony of Defeat,’” claimed previous ABC sports activities producer Doug Wilson.

The footage of his crash was integrated into the opening sequence of ABC’s “Wide Globe of Athletics.” The networks iconic sports show that was broadcasted from 1961 through 1998.

For Bogataj, it was in truth regrettable, but nevertheless a best illustration for “The Agony of Defeat.”

“Only optimistic thoughts of ABC utilizing the reel as the opening for ‘The Agony of Defeat.’ That introduced me a large amount of publicity, brought some very good memories,” mentioned Bogataj.

Nowadays, new memories are evolving around but one more Slovenian athlete, Luca Dončić. He himself significantly far too youthful to bear in mind Vinko Bogataj, but nevertheless, Bogataj continues to be 1 of his most loyal supporters.

“When you view the individual activity, realizing that he’s ready to score 40 details, shoot from 3-factors from the most outrageous positions, it’s hard to imagine that he’s a single of us from Slovenia. A terrific feeling of delight I dare say,” claimed Bogataj.

But for now, aside for recreational snowboarding and ceremonial responsibilities at community ski events, Bogataj’s new enthusiasm is exhibited during his property in Lesce, Slovenia.

The electricity of imagery is so at any time current in Bogataj’s artwork, just as on this day, 51 a long time in the past, his ski crash has remained etched in the recollections of so numerous.

Amelia J. Bell

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