Isn’t it true that everyone likes a good underdog story? Nothing beats a complete outsider upsetting the odds and defeating their favorite opponent for many sports fans.
Over the years, the Olympics have produced several well-known underdog stories. Both the Summer and Winter Games have had their fair share of incredible moments against the odds.
it’s time to take a look at the underdogs that have a chance to earn a medal in Beijing in the Winter Olympics 2022. Some of the athletes and teams on this list will be familiar to you, while others will surprise you.
The following are five underdogs who have a chance to medal at the 2022 Winter Olympics.
Underdogs at the Winter Olympics 2022
- Tobias Arlt/Tobias Wendl (Germany) – Men’s Doubles Luge
Tobias Arlt and Tobias Wendl are luge legends, with a combined total of eight Winter Olympic gold medals.
The German combination won the men’s doubles and mixed team events in Sochi in 2014 before repeating the feat in Pyeongchang four years later. As a result, they will be the defending champions in Beijing.
During the 2021-22 Luge World Cup, Arlt and Wendl only won one of the 12 events they competed in, with two second-place finishes and three third-place finishes.
Toni Eggert and Sascha Benecken, a fellow German couple, won five events, including four of the final six.
Nonetheless, Eggert and Benecken were clear favorites to win the men’s double event in Pyeongchang 2018. What went wrong? They were 0.290 seconds behind Arlt and Wendl at the finish line.
Arlt and Wendl won gold in each of the past two Winter Olympics, so they won’t be the biggest underdogs in 2022. Despite this, they are unlikely to defend their title after a disappointing World Cup campaign.
However, We wouldn’t be surprised if they upset the odds. The two 34-year-olds have a habit of rising to the challenge of the Winter Olympics, so we expect them to add to their medal tally in China.
- Canada – Men’s Ice Hockey
When my colleague Nick Sterling looked at the early favorites for the men’s ice hockey competition at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Canada (+150) and the United States (+325) were the overwhelming favorites. The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) was then valued at +425.
However, as of a few days ago, when we looked at the newest odds for men’s hockey in Beijing 2022, the ROC was the new gold medal favorite.
Canada has slid to fourth place in the betting odds, with Team USA in sixth place. Since the NHL will not be releasing any players for the next Games, this is the situation.
Canada is home to many of the world’s best ice hockey players. Before the NHL announced its embargo in December, superstars like Connor McDavid, Sidney Crosby, and Alex Pietrangelo were expected to compete in Beijing 2022.
Nonetheless, the Canadians, who are now rated first in the world, should have enough elite players to compete for a medal in China.
Let’s not forget that Canada holds a record nine gold medals in men’s ice hockey, as well as four silvers and three bronzes. Between 2002 to 2014, the men won three of the four gold medals on offer before finishing second in 2018.
- Lindsey Jacobellis (USA) – Women’s Snowboard Cross
Lindsey Jacobellis, 36, will be one of the oldest athletes competing in Beijing in 2022. Although her age makes her an underdog in this year’s Winter Olympics, it would be foolish to underestimate her.
In 2006, the Connecticut snowboarder made his Olympic debut on the slopes. Should we have won gold in Turin if it hadn’t been for a fall on the penultimate jump? She had to settle for second place instead.
Jacobellis was unable to advance to the medal round in both the 2010 and 2014 Olympic Games, finishing fifth in Vancouver and seventh in Sochi, respectively. However, based on her performance in Pyeongchang 2018, she has a chance to win a medal in 2022.
- Jamaica – Men’s/Women’s Bobsled
The Jamaican bobsled teams had to be mentioned while discussing the Beijing 2022 underdogs.
When the Jamaican two-man and four-man bobsled teams raced in the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary, they became unlikely heroes. You don’t need us to remind you that their exploits were the inspiration for the Disney picture Cool Runnings, released in 1993.
Jamaica’s four-man bobsled squad will compete in the next Winter Olympics for the first time in almost 20 years – and 34 years after their first appearance.
The renowned four-man team, however, will not be the only Jamaicans in China. Three different Jamaican bobsled teams will compete in the same Winter Olympics for the first time.
- Tahli Gill/Dean Hewitt (Australia) – Mixed Doubles Curling
What comes to mind when you think about Australia? Warm beaches? What about palm trees? Kangaroos?
Curling was probably not one of your first thoughts. That’s logical, given that there isn’t a single professional curling rink in Australia.
Tahli Gill and Dean Hewitt, on the other hand, made history in December. The mixed doubles team defeated South Korea in the last Olympic qualification event in the Netherlands to become the first Australian curling team to qualify for the Winter Games.
As one might assume, cold-weather countries have fully dominated Olympic curling over the years. Canada has won six of the 14 gold medals available across all events. Sweden and Great Britain have also won several gold medals.
On the list of mixed doubles teams for Beijing 2022, it wouldn’t be unjust to argue that the Australians look out of place. All of the traditional suspects are present, making Australia appear to be an exception.
With only ten teams playing in the mixed double curling event in China, Gill and Hewitt have a good chance of capturing a medal. In 2018, the South Korean ladies won silver, and the Australians barely beat them to qualify for this year’s Games.