onsdag 16. februar 2022

After dip in Beijing, Olympians ask: What about Africa?

Victory, of sorts, for Eritrea’s sole Winter Olympian — one of just six athletes competing for African countries at the Games in China — was achieved even before his feat of surviving two runs in blizzard conditions down a hazardous course aptly named The Ice River. Before flying to China for his Olympic ski race in the mountains northwest of Beijing, Shannon-Ogbnai Abeda learned of a cross-country skier living in Germany who has been so inspired by Abeda’s trailblazing that he’s aiming to qualify for their East African nation at the next Winter Games in 2026.

“It was because of all the interviews that I did and, you know, me coming and doing this again,” Abeda, who also raced at the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, said after his 39th-place finish in the giant slalom that only 46 of 87 starters completed in Sunday’s snowstorm.