This year’s PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics will prove Africa’s a force to be reckoned with. Hopefully this continent’s success in the snow will be written in gold. The PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics will have 8 African countries in attendance with 13 athletes lined up to impress. This proves to be a record for our continent as 13 athletes is the highest number of competitors to compete at the Games over the years.
South Africa – Alpine Skiing
Having the weight of an entire country on your skis isn’t something any rider should take lightly. Connor Wilson is the only Winter Olympics athlete representing South Africa this year. It never snows in Johannesburg and the fact that someone from this region made it to the Olympics is pretty impressive. Wilson was one of two athletes who qualified for the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics. However, South Africa could only send one competitor and Wilson earned his spot by having a higher world ranking than his opponent.
Kenya – Alpine Skiing
Sabrina Simander is someone to keep an eye out for this Winter Olympics as she never backs down from a challenge. After competing at the 2016 Youth Olympics Winter Games, her ambitions of winning gold soared. Simander received the honour of being Kenya’s flag bearer at the opening ceremony last night. Simander will be facing this challenge alone, as she’s Kenya’s only chance at a medal.
Morocco – Alpine Skiing & Cross-Country Skiing
Moroccan riders will luckily have company on their trip as two athletes are set to compete for gold. Adam Lamhamedi will be competing in the Men’s Alpine Skiing event. He made history in 2012 at the Winter Youth Olympic Games when he took gold. He was the first alpine skier in Africa’s Winter Olympics history to win a gold medal.
Samir Azzimani kicked off his career as an alpine skier. He made the switch to cross-country after the 2012/13 season. His initial goal was to compete at the 2014 Winter Olympics as an alpine skier, but injured himself in training. Being an active person, Azzimani made it his mission to find a new activity to keep his muscles busy. He considered cycling, but it proved to be too dangerous in the winter. He then spotted some cross-country skiers pass his house and made it his new goal to dominate this sport.
Togo – Alpine Skiing & Cross-Country
Togo will have an all-girl team present at this year’s Winter Olympics. Alpine skiing seems to be a favourite winter sport amongst African countries. Alessia Afi Dipol is representing Togo, despite her not being a resident of the country. Dipol’s father owns a factory in Togo that specialises in sport clothing and through this connection that Dipol can represent Togo. She’s proud of wearing the Togo national colours and will always stay loyal to her adopted country.
Originally from Togo, Mathilde-Amivi Petitjean moved to France at the age of 2. She also had the honour of being Togo’s Olympic flag bearer. Petitjean represented France in junior level cross-country events. She switched over to Togo at the start of the 2013/14 season. The Togolese Skiing Federation reached out to her via Facebook. They offered her the chance to compete at the Winter Olympics wearing the Togo colours.
Nigeria – Bobsleigh
Akuoma Omeoga and Moriam Seun Adigun are two extremely talented bobsledders. These girls surprised the winter sport world when they qualified at the end of 2017 – despite being the underdogs. They are the first bobsleigh athletes from an African country to compete at these Games. Omeoga started off as a field athlete, but when she met Adigun at a BBQ in Texas she was introduced to the idea of joining a bobsleigh team. Adigun decided on creating a Nigerian bobsled federation and asked Omeoga to be her team’s brakeman.
Further Information on PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics
Do your part by backing every athlete representing this proud continent. Visit the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics website for more information.