Take a look back at the 2022 Winter Olympics with a sport-by-sport review of the biggest stories, highlights, medal results and more.
Drink wine, ski fast.
Sometimes, the key to making Winter Olympics history is just that simple. So it was for Switzerland’s Alpine ski racers at the 2022 Games, who followed their delightfully straightforward blueprint to five gold medals in Beijing. Never before has a nation combined for as many Alpine skiing victories at a single Winter Games. But the historic Swiss success made up just one piece of a dramatic, quirky and unforgettable Alpine skiing program that spanned 11 events at the Beijing Games.
Johannes Thingnes Boe of Norway did not disappoint at the 2022 Winter Olympics, guiding Norway to a total of 14 medals in biathlon and helping Norway break the record for most gold medals ever won at a single Winter Olympics. His compatriot Marte Olsbu Roeiseland also aided in Norway’s record breaking medal tally and became the first woman to win five medals at a single Olympics in biathlon.
France was second in the biathlon medal table thanks to Quentin Fillon Maillet, who won five of the country’s seven medals. He was poised to become the first athlete in the history of the Winter Olympics to win six medals at a single Winter Olympics but missed the podium in his final event, the coveted men’s 15km mass start.
For a largely obscure sport — at least to almost everyone who isn’t German — bobsled nearly stole the show at the 2022 Winter Olympics.
The men’s two- and four-man races, as well as the two-woman competition, primarily demonstrated Germany’s sliding sport dominance at these Games. Through luge, skeleton, and bobsled, Germany won nine of 10 possible gold medals; bobsled pilot Friedrich Francesco earned two, while Laura Nolte clinched one.
But the Olympic debut of monobob, a second women’s bobsledding event, broke the German stranglehold. More importantly, it offered an opportunity for two of the United States’ most resilient, compelling, and decorated athletes to truly shine — specifically, as the final two heats aired immediately after Super Bowl LVI, when practically the entire country had its eyes glued to a screen.
Cross Country Skiing
Jessie Diggins made history by becoming the first U.S. woman to secure an individual cross-country medal, but her road to success was not easy. She went face to face with big names in cross-country like sprint unit Jonna Sundling of Sweden, the number one overall World Cup champion Natalya Nepryeyva of ROC and Norway’s Therese Johaug, who won three gold medals in her final Olympic appearance.
Johaug’s compatriot on the men’s team, Johannes Hoesflot Klaebo, proved he still had the sprint magic he came into the 2018 Games with. Klaebo earned two more gold medals at these Games and beat longtime rival Alexander Bolshunov of the ROC in two occasions — the team sprint and sprint free. But Bolshunov still became the only athlete to ever win five cross-country skiing medals at a single edition of the Winter Olympics
Italy went unbeaten on the way to mixed doubles curling gold, Sweden’s veteran team made history by winning the country’s first men’s curling Olympic title, and Great Britain’s women’s team dominated at the perfect time in the gold medal game.
Headlines during the 2022 Winter Olympics were overtaken by an issue that occurred off the ice: Kamila Valieva’s positive drug test from Dec. 25 that came to light on Feb. 8 after she had competed in the team event. Figure skating was then marred by debate surrounding whether Valieva should compete in the women’s singles event, and the matter of awarding the team event medals, but there was still plenty to celebrate on the ice.
The gold medals for each of the four disciplines went to skaters from four different nations, though the figure skating medal table was dominated by the Russian Olympic Committee.
ROC secured medals in four of five events, while Japan’s four medals and the United States’ three each spanned three events. Led by Nathan Chen‘s gold medal, the U.S. earned its most figure skating medals in 20 years.
Freestyle skiing at the 2022 Winter Olympics featured 18-year-old Eileen Gu capturing a historic three medals at her debut Games, and the U.S. team collecting a total of eight medals across men’s freeski, women’s and mixed team aerials, and women’s moguls.
China, for whom Gu competes, combined a sweep of the individual aerials events with Gu’s wins in halfpipe and big air to claim four golds. Gu had another silver in slopestyle, as did the nation’s mixed aerials team, which was upset by the Americans for the top prize.
There were countless memorable storylines from the men’s and women’s hockey tournaments at the 2022 Winter Olympics. Whether it was the ongoing rivalry between the United States and Canadian women’s hockey teams or a teenage Slovak stealing the show against grown men, there was certainly no shortage of special moments.
At the 2022 Winter Olympics, Germany swept all four luge disciplines for the second time since the team relay event was introduced at Sochi 2014.
In a thorough display of dominance, Germany earned gold in men’s and women’s singles, (open) doubles, and team relay competitions — and snatched two silvers, to boot. Three star athletes broke their records for most golds — twice — further cementing claims they are the greatest lugers of all time.
Nordic combined at the 2022 Winter Olympics was an unpredictable adventure through air and snow that included one of the most shocking and memorable moments in the sport’s Olympic history.
It also saw the return to power Jorgen Graabak, a two-time gold medalist at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. Graabak was a non-factor in individual events in 2018, but returned to the podium three times in Beijing, including twice as a gold medalist.
And for the third straight time at the Winter Games, the highly-anticipated 4×5 km team event came down to a duel between rivals Norway and Germany.
South Korea’s Choi Min-Jeong, Italy’s Arianna Fontana and Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands stood on the podium to receive the final short track medals of the 2022 Winter Olympics.
It was a fitting conclusion, as the triad accounted for seven of nine individual women’s medals at the Games, and they became the first trio in the sport, men’s or women’s, to successfully defend individual gold medals from the previous Olympic Games.
After crushing all four luge events, Germany continued its sliding sport dominance in skeleton. The country earned its first men’s skeleton gold at the 2022 Winter Olympics, then went six-for-six on sleds with another unprecedented win in women’s skeleton.
These Games generated additional headlines with the first Australian medalist in the women’s event; however, they also marked the only competition since that discipline’s 2002 introduction that Great Britain failed to land a female on the podium, as well as the only occasion since 1948 that any British athlete missed a medal in the sport.
Also in the women’s competition: One of America’s most beloved and resilient Winter Olympians slid “farewell” after five consecutive appearances dating back to Torino 2006.
The ski jumping program at the 2022 Winter Olympics concluded in an upset performance from the Slovenian athletes. They edged out Norway and Germany to the podium and found it three times in the women’s normal hill, mixed team final and men’s team final. Led by standout star Ursa Bogataj, who did a complete 180 from her last place finish at PyeongChang 2018 and took gold in Beijing, the Slovenians won the most medals in the 2022 ski jumping program.
Meanwhile, the fan favorites coming into the Games were Germany’s Karl Geiger and Norwegians Marius Lindvik and Robert Johansson. Out of the three, Lindvik was the only one who found gold with a huge jump in the large hill individual final round.
Snowboarding at the 2022 Winter Olympics featured Shaun White‘s last ride, juxtaposed with Ayumu Hirano landing the first two clean-run triple corks in history; Chloe Kim returning with new priorities to defend her title; and Lindsey Jacobellis slaying a demon from the past by winning not one but two Olympic golds.
Led by Jacobellis and Kim, the U.S. tied Austria atop the medal count with three golds and an additional silver apiece.
The 2022 Winter Olympic speed skating competition involved the most historically successful team maintaining prominence while new faces grabbed a hold of the sport.
The Netherlands remained the dominant country with 12 medals including six gold to extend its all-time lead, while Erin Jackson of the United States became the first Black woman to win a speed skating gold medal.
Also, Swedish skater Nils van der Poel shattered the world record in the men’s 10,000m race, then followed the win by posting a 62-page document on how he did it.