The Most Interesting Facts About the Winter Olympics

by VAUGHAN SHANLEY '15


The 2014 Sochi Olympic Games will be legendary. With the most expensive games yet, incredible amount of security, and beautiful setting, this is certainly a history-making event. Because most of us will be 5,744 miles away in Cincinnati, here are some of the most interesting facts about the Games:

1. Lolo Jones, a hurdler who competed in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics decided to try bobsledding this year and made USA’s Olympic team.

2. 12 new events will be added to the list of sports that will showcase this year in Sochi, including a women’s ski jumping event. German Carina Vogt was the first woman to win a gold medal in this event.

3. Sochi is a subtropical resort town where temperatures rarely drop below about 36º F. Most of the snow will be manufactured on the mountains.

4. Shaun White, the face of snowboarding, was worth $20 million in 2010 and his wealth continues to grow. He is only 27 years old. However, this Olympics his image took a hit when he placed 4th in the Men’s half pipe Snowboarding competition, after pulling out of his other event, the Men’s Slope style competition.

5. Joseph Stalin kept a summer home in Sochi, and advertised the beachfront living that many people enjoy in the warmer months.

6. 2014 is the second time Russia has hosted the Olympic Games, but because the first took place during the Cold War, the US boycotted the Games. This will be the first time American Olympic athletes compete in the country.

7. Each Olympic medal weighs between 460 and 531 grams and took about 18 hours to produce. The gold medals will also have bits of meteorite embedded in them from a meteor retrieved in Lake Chebarkul in central Russia.

8. Due to the number of people and athletes attending the 2014 Olympic Games, there will be some double toilets at a few of the sports venues. The supply of toilet paper has also proved to be a problem this year.

9. The Olympic Torch will travel a total of 40,300 miles on its way to Sochi, which is the longest distance ever. It will be traveling by car, plane, train, Russian troika, and a sled pulled by a reindeer.

10. The top two athletes going to Sochi are Marit Bjorgen, a cross-country skier from Norway, and German Felix Loch, who compete on the luge.