The 2018 Winter Olympics
It’s that time once again, the Winter Olympics! The Winter Olympic Games is a great event that showcases the best sports and competitors in a wide range of winter sports.
Since 1924 the Winter Olympics have been staged every four years and the next games are just around the corner.
This year’s competition will be the 23rd Winter Olympics and with over 90 nations competing and over million expected spectators at the events, it’s expected to be one of the best games in recent history.
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Guide to 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics.
The games will be staged in PyeongChang, in South Korea. This will be only the third time that the Winter Olympics will take place in Asia, with the other two times both being in Japan in 1972 and 1998.
The games will get underway with the first round of events taking place on the 8th of February. The games will officially open with the opening ceremony taking place on the 9th. Over the course of the following few weeks, athletes from all over the world will compete in a wide range of sports with the closing ceremony taking place on the 25th of February.
Events at the Winter Olympics
There will be an impressive 102 events taking place in 15 disciplines across 7 different sports:
- Alpine Skiing
- Cross-country skiing
- Figure skating
- Freestyle skiing
- Ice hockey
- Nordic combined skiing
- Short and long track speed skating
- Ski jumping
There will also be 6 new medaled events for 2018
- Team event for alpine skiing
- Mixed doubles curling
- Men’s and women’s big air for snowboarding
- Men’s and women’s mass start for speed skating
There are two main hubs, referred to as ‘clusters’ where the events will takes place
The PyeongChang Mountain Cluster hosts:
- The Olympic Stadium (opening and closing ceremonies);
- Alpensia’s ski jumping, nordic skiing, biathlon, and sliding (bobsleigh, luge, and skeleton) centres
- Two alpine ski centres of Yongpyong (giant slalom and slalom) and Jeongseon (downhill, super G, and alpine combined)
- The Bokwang Snow Park (snowboard cross, halfpipe, slalom, and slopestyle, plus freestyle skiing).
The Gangneung Coastal Cluster:
- The Gangneung and Kwandong hockey centres
- Gangneung Oval (speed-skating)
- The ice arena (figure skating and short-track speed-skating)
- Curling centre
Who’s Expected to Win?
A virtual prediction from gracenote.com have Germany at the top of their expected medal table, with Norway and Canada taking 2nd and 3rd place:
1: Germany2: Norway 3: Canada
4: USA5: France
Other medal table predictions have slightly different standings but most people seem to agree that the German team will take top spot.
Previous Medal Tables
2014: Sochi, Russia1: Norway2: Canada3: USA
Russia initially took the 1st place position but were stripped of 13 medals following doping violations.
2010: Vancouver, Canada1: Canada2: Germany3: USA
Controversies Surrounding the PyeongChang Winter Olympics
As with any major sporting event, there have been some issue for the organisers to overcome in the build up to the event. There are three main controversies surrounding the 2018 Winter Olympics:
1: Russia Banned from Competing
Following an investigation that revealed that Russian athletes had been involved in state-sponsored doping for the 2014 games which were held in Sochi, Russia, the IOC (International Olympic Committee) banned Russia from taking part in the 2018 Winter Olympics.
2: No NHL Players in the Ice Hockey Events
A schedule clash with the NHL (National Hockey League) and the Winter Olympics led to a dispute over whether the IOC would cover the costs incurred by the NHL players who would participate in the games, as they had done in previous games. The IOC decided against this and as a result the NHL announced that no NHL players will be playing in the Ice Hockey at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
3: North Korean Weapons Testing Impacting Ticket Sales
In the build up to the games less tickets have been sold than expected. This has been linked to the recent weapons tests conducted by North Korea. The organising committee of the games eased fears by stating that it is expected that North Korea won’t interfere with the games due to the fact they will have their own athletes competing.
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