Eddie the Eagle
Michael Edwards captured the imagination of the globe during the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary as an amateur ski jumper competing against weathered professionals. While he lacked the image of a professional athlete (wearing thick glasses) nor had much experience, he was revered for his passion, determination, and courage.
Ultimately, his dedication proved insufficient for success, coming in last in both the 70m and 90m ski jumping events. By comparison, in the 70m event he scored 69.2 points from his two jumps – the competitor who came second-last scored 140.4. The winner, Matti Nykänen of Finland, scored 229.1.
While he may have walked away empty handed, ‘Eddie the Eagle’ went on to be the protagonist of the 2015 film Eddie the Eagle starring Taron Egerton.
Jakara Anthony wins gold
As Dorothea Mackeller wrote, Australia is a sunburnt country, a land of sweeping plains, of ragged mountain ranges, of drought and flooding rains. So what would we know about snow, ice and winter sports?
Since Australia began competing at the Winter Olympics in 1896, we had only amassed five gold medals at the Winter Olympics in total, which made Jakara Anthony’s gold medal victory at the 2022 Beijing Olympics, and Australia’s sixth gold medal, such a spectacular achievement.
After finishing first in each of her qualifying runs, Jakara was in pole position to win gold at the women’s freestyle moguls event.
Moguls is the sport of descending a mountain plagued with bumps and jumps – known for pushing the human knee joint to the limit. Scored by a combination of technique, speed, and ‘jump quality’, Jakara managed to calm her nerves and score 83.09, beating American Jaelin Kauf.