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With the excitement rising for the Winter Olympics 2018, our guide will help you learn the game better

The 2018 Winter Olympics are all set to take place from February 9-25. It’s the 23rd Winter Olympics. The first took place in Chamonix, France, in 1924. So let’s take a quick look at everything that a sport lover would like to know, including location, new events, venues, how to watch the Games and the mascot. Competitions will be held across 13 venues.

Host City

The host city is PyeongChang, South Korea, which is about 125 kilometres east of Seoul. A train journey between Seoul and PyeongChang usually takes about 90 minutes. Officials announced in 2011 that the city had beaten Munich and Annecy to host.
While South Korea has previous Olympics Games experience (Seoul hosted the Summer Olympics in 1988), this is a totally new ball game as things have changed a lot in the last 30 years.

New events

The International Olympic Committee added four events for 2018. On the slopes, athletes will now be able to compete in big air snowboarding and freestyle skiing. On the ice, get ready for mass start speed skating and mixed doubles curling. Overall, the athletes at PyeongChang will compete in seven sports — biathlon, bobsleigh, curling, ice hockey, luge, skating and skiing — with 15 varied disciplines across all sports. And there are 102 medals up for grabs.

The medals

Created by designer Lee Suk-woo, the medals for these Games feature dynamic diagonal lines and three-dimensional consonants from the Korean alphabet that stretch across the face, according to the official website. They’ve been crafted with a texture to resemble tree trunks, symbolising “the work that has gone into developing Korean culture and the Games themselves,” says the website. Between the bronze, silver and gold medals, the gold weighs the most — 586 grams.

The mascot

The 2018 mascot is a white tiger named Soohorang. The tiger is “closely associated with Korean mythology and culture” and is a “familiar figure in Korean folk tales as a symbol of trust, strength and protection,” according to the Games website.

Future Games

After South Korea, the Winter Games move to Beijing in 2022. You might remember Beijing hosted the Summer Olympics in 2008. The next Summer Games will be in Tokyo in 2020, followed by Paris in 2024 and Los Angeles in 2028.

The opening and closing ceremonies are set to be hosted at PyeongChang Olympic Stadium, a temporary structure with a capacity of not less than 35,000 spectators. The opening ceremonies will take place on February 9 and the closing ceremonies on February 25.

South Korea is six hours ahead of Bahrain. It’s 14 hours ahead of New York and nine hours ahead of London.

Words: Tim Lee

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