About That Olympic Mountain Bike Course Fire

rio olympics fire
Monday's wildfire, seen from the from the field hockey stadium in Deodoro.Christian Petersen / Getty

Update: The AFP reports that the UCI determined that the mountain bike course was not damaged by the wildfire.

Athletes are getting robbed at gunpoint, the water venues are full of raw sewage, the beach venues are flooding, and hometown fans are booing foreign athletes for simply competing against Brazil. So what's next for the Rio Olympics? It's on fire.

On Monday, the 10th day of competition, a wildfire broke out north of the Olympic village near the Deodoro cluster of 11 venues. The fire burned closest to the Mountain Bike Center and Shooting Center. And at the nearby field hockey stadium, a layer of ash fell over the playing field. With the help of heavy rains later in the day, local authorities say they got the blaze under control.

Cycling's governing body, the Union Cycliste Internationale, is inspecting the course for damage today. Initial reports indicate that while the fire was close to the three-mile trail, it didn't spread onto the course. Fortunately, the cross-country mountain bike races aren't scheduled until Saturday (women) and Sunday (men), with the venue slated to open for practice rides on Wednesday.  

Wildfire excitement notwithstanding, the weekend's mountain bike races should be two of Rio's most exciting events in their own right. The fast, technical course will push the world's best riders to their limits while keeping the action close for the 90-minute races. You can check out a GoPro course preview here, and also find out how to watch the mountain bike races.