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A WINTER OLYMPIC ATHLETE IN A SNOWLESS COUNTRY

It sounds strange, but there are countless cases at the Winter Olympic Games. Though there are several African countries who have never seen the snowfall within their borders, most of these athletes are coming from our very own continent.

Countless countries who will be present starting today at the Opening Ceremony either have no mountains, are of tropical weather, simply have never seen snow, or a combination of these.

One of the most famous cases of such disadvantage was the Jamaican Bobsleigh team of Calgary 1988, who catapulted a series of documentaries, books and movies in their honor. Composed by Devon Harris, Michael White, Samuel Clayton, and Dudley Stokes, this quartet made history by becoming the first athletes from a tropical island to participate at the Winter Olympics.

Twenty-eight years later, the story would repeat itself. Except, this time, in the women’s category. Jamaica will present their Bobsleigh team where they will also make history.

“It is magnificent to be here. We’re from a warm country and it’s freezing here, but to represent our country at the Olympic Games is something truly special. We are living a fantastic moment right now. This is a unique experience to express ourselves and compete for our country, without letting the results define us”, points out Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian from Jamaica.

Then we have Klaus Jungbluth from Guayaquil, Ecuador. Another case of an athlete from a country with no winter advantages. Having no snow available, this crafty athlete put his skis on wheels for training and, despite these drawbacks, he still classified for PyeongChang and wants to compete in the name of his country and leave a lasting impression.

“It is a great honor and it brings me immense happiness to be able to represent my country for the first time in these Games. It’s an atmosphere of fraternity and very joyful. We must give everything we’ve got and lead these Games in harmony and brotherhood”, points out Jungbluth.

Mexico has a top skier of their own. Born in Puerto Vallarta, he was an orphan who got adopted by a Canadian family; and so, his love for ski grew and his connection with the Spanish language diminished.

“This is a dream come true for me. It’s epic. I am still pinching myself trying to wake myself up. It’s like a dream and it’s fantastic. It’s a wonderful environment. I expect to compete well and enjoy this wonderful sporting celebration”, pointed out Rodolfo Dickson.

In the case of Brazil, they stand tall with a total of ten athletes representing their country, the third country to bring the most athletes with it. Amongst them, the Men’s Bobsleigh team.

“We’re happy to represent our country. We expect to perform well and get excellent results here”, said Edson Martins, from Time Brazil.

Along with these, we can go on an endless list such as the two Bolivian athletes, or the one from Bermuda. Even though they all live on the northern hemisphere now, they will represent their country of origin.

Like these, there are many particular cases of athletes born in a snowless country and are now competing at the most important winter competition in the world, the Winter Olympic Games.