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My topic is Alpine Skiing.
My question is:

"Based on the best male times in Olympic Downhill skiing in 2002 and 2006, have skiers increased, or decreased their speed?"



Data:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alpine_skiing_at_the_2002_Winter_Olympics#Downhill
http://news.bbc.co.uk/winterolympics2002/hi/english/static/winter_olympics/statistics/events/alpine_skiing_results.stm
2002:
Runs:1
Course length: 1.77 miles (2.86 km)
Times: Gold = 1:39.13, Silver = 1:39.35, Bronze = 1:39.41
Average time = 1:39.2966666666..., rounded to 1:39.30 = 9930 hundredths of a second
Scale factor = 36.253776435045317
Average mph = 64.169184290030211, rounded to 64.17 mph

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alpine_skiing_at_the_2006_Winter_Olympics#Downhill
http://asp.usatoday.com/sports/olympics/torino/results.aspx?rsc=ASM010100
2006:
Runs:1
Course length: 2.05 miles (3.299 km)
Times: Gold = 1:48.80, Silver = 1:49.52, Bronze = 1:49.82
Average time = 1:49.38 = 10938 hundredths of a second
Scale factor = 32.912781130005485
Average mph = 67.471201316511244, rounded to 67.47 mph

To compare the two Olympics, I had to find the average mph in each. To do this, I took the top 3 male times and averaged them. Then, I found how many hundredths of a second there were in the average times. I divided the number of hundredths of a second in an hour by the number of hundredths of a second in the average times. Finally, I multiplied the quotient by the course length to find the average mph.

Based on the information above, skiers have increased their speed. To be more specific, the average mph was increased by 3.3, from 2002 to 2006. I know this because 2006's average of 67.47 mph is greater than 2002's average of 64.17. 67.47-64.17=3.3. Therefore, Olympic downhill skiers have increased their speeds.

NOTE from MISS SMITH: I wonder how changing equipment since 2002 has affected competition speeds.