Counting Down to Beijing 2022

Photo: Sean Sisk

As the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games fast approach, I figure now is as good a time as any to dust off the old website and start blogging again.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been four years since PyeongChang 2018. Memories of Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir wowing the crowd with their legendary Moulin Rouge free dance, Kim Boutin bursting onto the scene and earning three medals in Short Track, and Team Canada racking up an astonishing 29 medals overall, remain incredibly vivid in my mind.

As the COVID-19 global pandemic nears the two-year mark, the hope is that the upcoming Winter Games will once again give us all something to cheer about. There is no doubt that these Olympics will be much different than previous ones, but I am equally certain that Canada’s top winter athletes will once again amaze and inspire us with their remarkable performances.

In just ten days, I will be heading overseas to serve as Skate Canada and Speed Skating Canada’s official photographer throughout the Olympics. I am absolutely thrilled at the prospect of witnessing and capturing so many memorable moments and sharing these with you along the way.

Of course, everything hinges on me staying healthy between now and January 27th, when I’m scheduled to depart for China. Testing positive for COVID-19 in the next week and a half would automatically spell an end to the adventure, so needless to say, I’m doing everything I can to avoid catching the virus.

Olympic events are set to begin on February 2nd. The Team Figure Skating competition will kick-off two days later, on February 4th, just a few hours before the Cauldron is lit during the Opening Ceremony at Beijing National Stadium.

If all goes according to plan, I will be covering an average of two events a day, for 17 consecutive days. In other words, there’ll be no shortage of action and excitement. Since I’m no elite athlete, I should probably reach out to Olympic Champion Decathlete Damian Warner for tips on how to maintain my stamina from start to finish.

Four years ago, I posted a blog entry every couple of days chronicling my adventures throughout the Games. I’m not sure if that will be possibile this time around, but I’ll certainly do my best to provide updates when I can. If nothing else, I would encourage you to follow Skate Canada and Speed Skating Canada’s socials to see some of my photos along the way.

In the meantime, I want to sincerely thank all those who have offered me their support and encouragement in the lead-up to the Olympics. The texts, emails, and phone calls I’ve received from family and friends over the past few weeks have been very much appreciated. I’m especially grateful to those who have gone out of their way to deliver food and other essential items to me while I’ve been in self-isolation lately.

After more than a year of preparation and anticipation, the countdown to Beijing is nearing single digits. Something tells me the fun is just getting started, so please stay tuned!

~ Greg

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