NRC/Carleton wind expert sought out by Olympians

An interesting story, well written. Very cool.

Larose and family arrived to their new home in Ottawa on Nov. 1, 1999. He was in his new office at the NRC on Nov. 15. He worked mostly with bridges until one day, in 2001, two strangers in spandex appeared in his wind tunnel.

They were Jeremy Wotherspoon and Catriona Le May Doan, leaders of Canada’s speed skating squad. They had come to test theories their coach had about aerodynamics, hoping to gain an edge ahead of the 2002 Salt Lake City winter Olympics.

“I saw that the problem they were trying to solve was exactly the same problem I was trying to solve with bridge cables,” Larose recalls. “The legs of an athlete and the surface of a cable are very similar.”

Only, Larose says, they weren’t going about it the right way.