Bundled Up in Beijing

 From the slopes of snowboarding to the twirls of figure skating, the Winter Olympics will offer a variety of fun games to watch this winter season. Coming to Beijing, China in February 2022, the Winter Olympics will be the first games Beijing has hosted since the 2008 Summer Olympics. However, the 2022 Winter Olympics will be the third consecutive Olympics hosted in Asia, following the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, and the 2018 Winter Olympics held in PyeongChang, South Korea. 

Last Winter Olympics at PyeongChang, Norway dominated the competition with the most medals won in the Olympics with 39 medals (14 gold, 14 silver, 11 bronze), with Germany, Canada, The United States, and the Netherlands trailing closely behind.

As for the American athletes, snowboarding legend, Shaun White, announced he will be competing in his final Winter Olympics games this February at the age of 35. White has competed in 4 Olympics and is a 3-time gold medalist on the halfpipe. White holds the world record for the most X-games gold medals and most Olympic gold medals by a snowboarder. Bearing a failed attempt during his first run in the qualifier round, White was able to bounce back and qualify to become one of the twelve snowboarders competing for gold.

Students all around Masuk have had their eyes on Beijing to watch the world class athletes. I was able to speak with Junior Owen Smith, who says, “I like to watch the Olympics every year, both Winter and Summer, but I definitely prefer the Winter Olympics”. When asked what his favorite event is, Smith responded with no hesitation, “Hockey, because it is the sport that I watch the most outside of the olympics, it is also just really fun to watch”.

The first gold medal for the States was won on Wednesday, February 9th, from women’s snowboarder Lindsey Jacobellis. The 36-year-old struck gold during the snowboard cross event, becoming the oldest American woman to win a Winter Olympics gold medal, which was able to kick-start the 3 more gold medals America would win in 2 days time.

When it came down to the end of the 2022 Winter Olympics, Norway came out the victor with a total of 16 gold medals, and trailing as a close runner-up was Germany with 12 gold. Third, fourth, fifth and sixth place were neck and neck, with China taking third place with 9 gold medals, resulting in a three way gold tie between the United States, Sweden and the Netherlands who all had 8. In terms of total medals, Norway blew out the competition, capturing a total of 37 medals as the second place country, Germany, only winning 27 medals. If you enjoyed this year’s Winter Olympics then look forward to the 2026 Winter games in Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy and the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris, France.

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