Moments of humour and joy are part and parcel of any Olympic Games so on World Smile Day. Olympics.com features six of those light-hearted times from Winter Olympics gone by.
Family photo with a difference
David Wise had just won his second consecutive gold in men's halfpipe, this time at PyeongChang 2018, when his three-year-old son, Malachi decided to join him on the podium. It wasn’t long before David’s wife Alexandra joined in, along with six-year-old daughter Nayeli, making it quite the unique family photo.
Usually athletes celebrate wildly when winning Olympic gold, right? Not Ester Ledecka. The Czech snowboard specialist was so shocked at winning gold in the super-G alpine skiing discipline at PyeongChang 2018 that she had to ask the camera operator if she had won. Yes, she had, beating the defending Olympic champion, Anna Veith, by just 0.01 seconds.
Ledecka was already making headlines by becoming the first-ever athlete to compete in both skiing and snowboarding at the Winter Olympics but was not a medal prospect in skiing, so much so that some broadcasters had already finished the live stream as the last few skiers, including Ledecka, finished their runs.
She was a medal favourite in her preferred snowboard slalom event, however, and it was there she doubled up on her gold-medal count, this time with more of a celebration.
When you're hurtling down an icy track at around 130kmph like some kind of superhero, you may as well dress like one. Republic of Korea's YUN Sungbin is such a fan of Ironman, he turned himself into Tony Stark's alter ego at his home Winter Olympic Games at PyeongChang 2018 by virtue of his helmet design. The feel-good factor worked for Yun as he became his nation's hero, going on to win gold in the men's skeleton event.
The USA hadn’t won an Olympic cross-country medal in 42 years, so when Jessica Diggins crossed the finish line millimetres ahead of one of the favourites Sweden in a dramatic finish in the women's team sprint final at PyeongChang 2018, her team-mate Kikkan Randall couldn’t help but throw herself on top of her exhausted but elated compatriot. The first words out of Diggins' mouth: "Did we just win the Olympics?"
A most unexpected curling fan
Perhaps one of the more surprising winter sports fans is one Mr. T, the former wrestler-turned-actor who played B. A. Barracus on the original A-Team TV series. Perhaps even more surprising, it was curling that was getting the 'crazy fool' so worked up in February 2018 as his USA side took on the Norwegians.
The outfits that got the 1980s icon all keyed up are pictured below. Unfortunately for fans of the US curling team, including the aforementioned Mr. T, the trousers had it, the Norwegians coming away with an 8-5 win.
Talking of outfits, it would be remiss of us not to mention one Prince Hubertus von Hohenlohe-Langenburg. The Mexican-born alpine skier may not have been expected to win a medal at any of the six Winter Olympic Games in which he competed, but he certainly gained attention for his sartorial ski wear, which included a mariachi-themed suit for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.