With the world once again in the throes of international sporting fever, there’s never been a better time to look back at the best moments of winter games past. From ice hockey triumph at the height of the Cold War to infamous bobsleigh heroes, here’s our top five round-up of the best of the best:
Britain takes home Curling gold, Salt Lake City 2002
Team GB had been without winter gold for 18 years – but could Curling, a sport which originated in Scotland, be the unlikely saviour to change that? Step in Rhona Martin and her team of five Scottish women to bring home the gold with the final stone of the contest.
Torvill and Dean, Sarajevo 1984
It was the moment that captivated a nation (and possibly the world), as Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean’s mesmeric figure skating left 24 million UK viewers watching in awed silence. With a perfect artistic impression score from every judge, this performance raised the bar, and became the benchmark for other skaters in the following decades. Essential viewing.
The Miracle on Ice, Lake Placid 1980
Geopolitical intrigue may have come to be associated with recent winter games – from the apparent cooling of relations between North and South Korea this year, to the controversy surrounding 2014’s competition in Sochi – but this is nothing new. In fact, 1980 saw Team USA take on the USSR at their own game – ice hockey – at the height of the Cold War. The largely amateur US team triumphed in the contest, which would come to be known as the miracle on ice. No wonder they called it a Cold War…
The Jamaican bobsleigh team, Calgary 1988
It was like something out of a movie: in 1988, an unlikely bobsleigh team from Jamaica travel to Calgary and win the hearts of viewers across the world, even if they didn’t take home any medals themselves. It’s no wonder then, their story was made into the 1993 movie Cool Runnings. Get on up, it’s bobsled time!
Eddie the Eagle, Calgary 1988
Another unlikely hero immortalised on film (this time in 2016’s Eddie the Eagle), Eddie Edwards may have finished last, but three decades later he’s still synonymous with the sport in the UK – and we’d call that a win. For those looking to revel in the magic of the winter games, look no further.
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