The Olympics are officially over and what an exciting two weeks it was. Overall the United States had a great Olympics, winning a total of twenty-five medals. More specifically: eight gold medals, ten silver, and seven bronze. Not only was the Olympics a tremendous success for the U.S.A, but it was very memorable. Records broken, legends born, others retiring, and much more! Here are all the USA highlights from the 2022 Olympics in Beijing.
One of the most exciting events this year was ice skating. When Nathan Chen took the ice, no one could compare. The Salt Lake City native has such a great gift in this sport that watching it was actually relaxing. His talent was demonstrated when Chen scored the highest score ever in the individual men’s event, with a total of 113.97. Nathan Chen has just begun his legacy, and it will be exciting to see where he goes next.
Legends never die. This Winter Olympics was snowboarder Shaun White’s final time out, on the slopes. Although Shaun did not win anything this year, he has had numerous victories throughout his career. He has won three gold medals from his five Olympic appearances. White has made an immense impact on the sport—his three gold medals make him the most decorated Olympic snowboarder ever. Even in his final Games, he made history as the oldest male halfpipe rider ever to participate in an Olympic competition. Snowboarding’s most-famed contest, the halfpipe, is performed in a half tube of snow. Half Pipes are approximately 11 to 22 feet (3.3 to 6.7 meters) high, with slopes between 16 and 18 degrees, which is enough of a pitch for snowboarders to maintain their momentum. It is extremely difficult for anyone on the slopes to successfully land after doing a trick. Fun fact: There have only been three perfect scores in the history of snowboarding halfpipe. Shaun White has two and Chloe Kim has one. They are both gifted, but Shaun White’s legacy will live on forever.
Talking about the slopes, success for Chloe Kim was immense at the Beijing Winter Olympics. Chloe Kim successfully defended her status as the Women’s Snowboard Halfpipe gold medalist. Chloe makes snowboarding look effortless, making her so much fun to watch. She is just beginning her long and successful journey, but her impact in this sport is tremendous!
Another success for the slopes! Gold medallist Alexander Hall bit his medal from the men’s Freeski slopestyle event, after winning. Hall was the only skier to eclipse the 90-point mark in the event, earning a 90.01 score on his first run and, subsequently, his first Olympic medal in his career. Hall put on quite the show during this year’s Olympics.
Erin Jackson won gold for the United States in speed skating. Jackson made history on the ninth day of the Winter Games. She became the first Black woman to medal at an Olympic speed skating event. The sport is very entertaining and ultimately fun to watch. Erin Jackson is on the rise and on to many successes.
Ashley Caldwell, Christopher Lillis, and Justin Schoenefeld of Team USA won gold during the Freestyle Skiing Mixed Team Aerials. This is the first gold medal for the United States in aerial freestyle skiing since 1998- how exciting! Teamwork indeed makes the dream work. These guys proved that to be true.
Finally, Lindsey Jacobellis, Kallie Humphries, and Elana Meyers Taylor were the three oldest Americans to ever win a medal at the Olympic Winter Games. Lindsey won gold in snowboarding. Finally, Kallie and Elana in bobsledding. These women are inspiring for many, and for a good reason.
Overall the Olympic Games in Beijing was a grand success for the country. It was thrilling to see history made in the games. In addition, new star athletes and their determination inspired the country for future conquests. The next Olympics are to be held in the Summer of 2024 in Paris. Until 2026 for the next Winter Olympics.