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Archive for Saturday, February 25, 2006

U.S. skier Peterson sent home after fight

February 25, 2006

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— U.S. aerials skier Jeret "Speedy" Peterson was sent home from the Turin Olympics after a night of partying ended with him getting into a fight that police had to break up.

A number of U.S. freestyle team members, coaches and officials had gathered socially Thursday night after the men's aerials finals in their mountain venue of Sauze D'Oulx, some staying out at a dance club until early Friday morning.

Tom Kelly, communications director for the U.S. Ski Team, said Peterson and friend Mason Fuller, an American who is not affiliated with the team, were seen fighting at a bus stop at around 9 a.m. Friday.

Kelly said he had been told Peterson appeared to be drunk, but he could not verify it first hand. He said police officers recognized the dustup as a scuffle between friends and did not arrest them or press charges.

However, the public loss of control was enough to get Peterson banned from further participation with the U.S. team in Olympic activities, such as the closing ceremony, Kelly said.

"It's significant being asked to leave the Olympic Village," Kelly said. "Given the circumstances, it's an acceptable action by the USOC and we concur with it - and in our discussions with Speedy, he concurs as well."

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