One athlete to know from all 93 countries competing in the Winter Olympics

Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

The Olympics always captivate an international audience with their size, scope, and spirit.

Countries from all across the globe compete, and while there’s a desire to be crowned best in the world, sportsmanship reigns over the fortnight’s worth of events. Sometimes the best stories to come from the games are not about the champions, but rather the underdogs who finished despite the odds, or those who proved their mettle simply by making it to the Olympics.

Below we’ve collected a list including one athlete to watch from every country competing at Pyeongchang 2018. The athletes range from potential breakout stars to athletes helping to make their country’s Winter Olympics debut, and there is no shortage of great stories to keep an eye out for and support.


Albania —  Ergon Tola

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 31

One thing to know: Tola was the first Albanian to ever compete in the Winter Olympics, making his debut at the 2006 Games, but had to withdraw from the 2014 games due to injury. This will be his fourth Olympics and his third time competing.


Andorra — Marc Oliveras

Clive Rose/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 26

One thing to know: Oliveras will be hoping that a miracle performance can help him bring home Andorra’s first Olympic medal – the country has never taken home hardware despite appearing in every Winter and Summer Games since 1976.


Argentina — Nicol Gastaldi

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 28

One thing to know:Gastaldi is making her return to the games after competing in 2010 but failing to qualify in 2014.


Armenia — Katya Galstyan

Harry How/Getty Images

Sport:Cross-country skiing

Age: 25

One thing to know:Galstyan will be the only woman on the Armenian team for the second straight games.


Australia — Scotty James

Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images

Sport: Snowboarding

Age: 23

One thing to know: James has competed with American Shaun White for the title of best snowboarder in the world all year. At the Olympics, he reportedly plans to break out a switch backside 1260 – a trick he recently became the first man to land in competition.


Austria — Julia Dujmovits

Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

Sport: Snowboarding

Age: 30

One thing to know: When Dujmovits won gold at the 2014 Games in Women’s parallel slalom, it was the first time the sport had been a part of Olympic competition. This year Dujmovits is back to defend her title.


Azerbaijan —  Patrick Brachner

Hannah Peters/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 26

One thing to know: Patrick Brachner will be the only Olympian from Azerbaijan this year, serving as the country’s loan competitor and flag bearer at opening ceremonies.


Belarus — Darya Domracheva

Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Biathlon

Age: 31

One thing to know: Of the five gold medals that Belarus took home from Sochi, Domracheva won three of them thanks to a dominating performance across three different biathlon events.


Belgium —  Bart Swings

Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 26

One thing to know: Swings is an inline skater and currently holds the world record for 10,000-meter inline speed skating. At Sochi 2014, he finished just one spot off of the podium in the men’s 5,000 meters. If he can improve on that in 2018, he’ll take home Belgium’s first Winter Olympics medal since 1998.


Bermuda — Tucker Murphy

Clive Mason/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 36

One thing to know: Tucker Murphy will be the lone athlete from Bermuda for the third consecutive Winter Olympics.


Bolivia — Simon Breitfuss Kammerlander

Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 23

One thing to know: Austrian born skier Simon Breitfuss Kammerlander was granted his Bolivian citizenship in 2015, and this year will help the country return to the Winter Games for the first time since 1992.


Bosnia and Herzegovina — Tanja Karisik

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 26

One thing to know:Karisik competed in both biathlon and cross-country skiing events at the 2014 Games, but appears to be focusing solely on her cross-country skiing competition in 2018.


Brazil — Isabel Clark Ribeiro

Cameron Spencer/Getty Images

Sport: Snowboarding

Age: 41

One thing to know:Isabel Clark Ribeiro was the first Brazilian snowboarder to compete in the Winter Olympics, making her debut at the 2006 Games, and competing in every Olympic Games since.


Bulgaria — Alexandra Zhekova

Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Sport: Snowboarding

Age: 30

One thing to know:Zhekova finished just two spots shy of the podium at Sochi 2014 in women’s snowboard cross, and will look to improve on that finish this year to bring Bulgaria its first Winter Games medal since 2006.


Canada — Marie-Philip Poulin

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Sport: Hockey

Age: 26

One thing to know:Marie-Philip Poulin has a knack for scoring goals on the grandest of stages, including netting the game-tying and game-winning goals in last year’s gold medal game against the United States.


Chile — Stephanie Joffroy

Lars Baron/Getty Images

Sport: Freestyle skiing

Age: 26

One thing to know: As you can see, Joffroy’s 2014 Games didn’t go as planned. She’ll hope to stay upright in her second shot at Olympic glory.


China — Zhang Hong

Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 29

One thing to know:Zhang Hong was the gold medalist in the women’s 1000 meters at Sochi 2014, and will be defending her title in Pyeongchang.


Colombia — Pedro Causil

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 26

One thing to know:Pedro Causil is a world class inline skater who transitioned to speed skating to pursue the Olympics. He is the first South American speed skater to ever qualify for the Winter Games, and will compete in the men’s 500 and 1000 meter events.


Croatia — Natko Zrnčić-Dim

Alexis Boichard/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 31

One thing to know: Janica and Ivica Kostelic brought home medals for Croatia from each of the previous four Winter Games, but this year both of the brother-sister duo will be absent from the games, leaving Natko Zrnčić-Dim and his teammates to fill the void.


Cyprus — Dinos Lefkaritis

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 22

One thing to know:Dinos Lefkaritis is the only athlete from Cyprus competing at this year’s Winter Olympics.


Czech Republic — Martina Sáblíková

Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 30

One thing to know:Martina Sáblíková is one of the most accomplished female speed skaters of all time, with five Olympic medals to her name, including two earned at Sochi 2014. She’s expected to compete in four events in Pyeongchang.


Denmark — Rasmus Stjerne

Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Sport: Curling

Age: 29

One thing to know: In his first year as Denmark’s skip in 2014, Stjerne brought his team within one win of making the playoff and earning a shot at a medal. This year, he’ll have most of his team returning, and four more years of experience under his belt with hopes of sliding Denmark onto the podium.


Ecuador — Klaus Jungbluth Rodriguez

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 38

One thing to know:Klaus Jungbluth Rodriguez is the first Olympian from Ecuador to ever compete in the Winter Games, and will serve as the country’s flag bearer during opening ceremonies.


Eritrea — Shannon-Ogbani Abeda

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 21

One thing to know: Canadian born Shannon-Ogbani Abeda will be the first athlete from Eritrea to compete in the Winter Olympics.


Estonia — Kristjan Ilves

Matt Roberts/Getty Images

Sport: Combined skiing

Age: 21

One thing to know:Ilves competed in the 2014 Olympics and did not come close to sniffing the podium, but if you take a look at his Instagram, he’s clearly one of the happiest Olympians you’ll find.


Finland — Petri Kontiola

Martin Rose/Getty Images

Sport: Hockey

Age: 33

One thing to know:Kontiola netted a goal and five assists for Finland at the 2014 Games, and with the NHL keeping many talented North American players from competing at Pyeongchang, Finland could have a chance to make some noise this year.


France — Martin Fourcade

Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty

Sport: Biathlon

Age: 29

One thing to know: Fourcade was one of our most dominant athletes of 2017, having won the overall World Cup for the past six years, the longest reign in the history of the biathlon. He’ll compete in numerous events and will likely have earned multiple medals for France by the conclusion of the games.


Georgia — Iason Abramashvili

Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 29

One thing to know: This will be Abramashvili’s fourth time competing at the Winter Games.


Germany — Felix Loch

Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Sport: Luge

Age: 28

One thing to know: Loch won gold in the men’s singles luge at Sochi 2014, alongside teammates Natalie Geisenberger, who won women’s singles, and Tobias Wendl and Tobias Arlt, who took home gold in men’s doubles. Together, the foursome took home gold in the mixed team relay, to cap off a dominant performance.


Ghana —  Akwasi Frimpong

Sport: Skeleton

Age: 32

One thing to know:Frimpong is a sprinter-turned-skeleton athlete and the only Olympian representing Ghana at the 2018 Games. It’s just Ghana’s second appearancein the history of the Winter Olympics.


Great Britain — Lizzy Yarnold

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Sport: Skeleton

Age: 29

One thing to know:Yarnold was Great Britain’s sole gold medal winner at Sochi 2014, and will attempt to become the first woman to ever defend the title in Pyeongchang.


Greece — Apostolos Angelis

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 24

One thing to know:Angelis will be looking to improve upon his 74th place performance at the 2014 Games.


Hong Kong — Arabella Ng

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine Skiing

Age: 16

One thing to know: 16-year-old Arabella Ng will be the only representative of Hong Kong at the Winter Olympics, and didn’t find out she’d be able to qualify until Christmas Day 2017. It’s been a whirlwind to prepare since then, as Ng is one of the youngest athletes at the games.


Hungary —  Viktor Knoch

Oleg Nikishin/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 28

One thing to know: Knoch is now representing Hungary for his fourth straight games, but he has not made a final since his debut in 2006, despite coming close on numerous occasions. Could this be the year he breaks back through?


Iceland — Snorri Einarsson

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 31

One thing to know:Einarsson is a former NCAA cross-country skiing champion from his days at Utah, and is now competing in his first Olympics.


India — Shiva Keshavan

Alex Livesey/Getty Images

Sport: Luge

Age: 36

One thing to know:Pyeongchang will be Keshavan’s sixth Olympic games, having been the youngest athlete to ever qualify for the luge at just 16 years old in 1998, and the first Indian representative to ever compete in the event.


Iran — Forough Abbasi

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 24

One thing to know: In her second Winter Olympics, Abbasi will look to improve on her 48th final ranking from Sochi 2014.


Ireland —  Seamus O’Connor

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Sport: Snowboarding

Age: 20

One thing to know:American born Seamus O’Connor resides in Park City, Utah, but competes under the Irish flag in halfpipe and slopestyle. Just 16 years old at Sochi 2014, O’Connor fell just short of reaching the final in both events – a result he’ll look to improve upon at the Pyeongchang Games.


Israel — Daniel Samohin

Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 19

One thing to know:Samohin has made some eccentric music choices for his performances, featuring artists ranging from Seal to The Scorpions to Hans Zimmer’s soundtrack to “Sherlock Holmes.”


Italy — Arianna Fontana

Clive Mason/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 27

One thing to know:Fontana will be competing in her fourth Olympics, and has had success at every turn – in 2006 she helped Italy win bronze in the women’s 3000 meter relay at just 15 years old, becoming the youngest athlete to medal that year. She will serve as Italy’s flag bearer this year.


Jamaica —  Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian and Carrie Russell

Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images For IBSF

Sport: Bobsled

Age: 32, 27

One thing to know:Fenlator-Victorian was a member of the U.S. Olympic team before deciding to compete for Jamaica, the birthplace of her father. Russell is a converted sprinter and together the pair are the first women’s bobsled team in the country’s history


Japan —  Yuzuru Hanyu

Koki Nagahama/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 23

One thing to know:Hanyu took home gold last year and is favoured to do so again in 2018, but will likely get a strong challenge from American Nathan Chen, who is making his Olympic debut.


Kazakhstan — Denis Ten

Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 24

One thing to know:Ten earned Bronze at Sochi 2014, giving Kazakhstan its only medal of the Games. He’ll look to make it back to the podium this year.


Kenya — Sabrina Simader

Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 19

One thing to know: Kenya will return to the Winter Olympics for the first time since 2006 thanks to Simader’s qualification. She will be the first alpine skier to compete for the country – all of Kenya’s previous athletes have competed in cross-country.


Korea — Women’s Hockey Team

Woohae Cho/Getty Images

Sport: Hockey

Age: N/A

One thing to know: The Korean Women’s hockey team will consist of athletes from both North and South Korea playing together, and walk out together during the opening ceremony under the Korean Unification Flag. They may be the biggest underdogs of all the women’s teams competing, but if they could steal just one win during group play, it would be an unforgettable victory.


North Korea — Ryom Tae-OK and Kim Ju-sik

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 19, 25

One thing to know: This pair will likely be the highest-profile performers to come out of North Korea during the 2018 Games. They’re short program is set to “A Day in the Life” by The Beatles – something to look forward to.


South Korea —  Park Seung-hi

Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 25

One thing to know: After taking three medals at Sochi 2014, Park Seung-hi is in a position to help extend South Korea’s somewhat dominant performance in the sport.


Kosovo — Albin Tahiri

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 28

One thing to know:Tahiri is the first athlete to ever compete for Kosovo in the Winter Olympics.


Kyrgyzstan — Evgeniy Timofeev

Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 23

One thing to know:Timofeev was Kyrgyzstan’s only athlete to compete at Sochi 2014, but will be joined this year by cross-country skier Tariel Zharkymbaev. Together they will both attempt to win Kyrgyzstan’s first ever Winter Games medal.


Latvia — Martins Dukurs

Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images For IBSF

Sport: Skeleton

Age: 33

One thing to know:Dukurs is a five-time skeleton world champion, but has always come up just short at the Olympics, winning silver at both the 2014 and 2010 Games. Can he shake the bug and take home the gold this year?


Lebanon — Natacha Mohbat

Al Bello/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 21

One thing to know:Mohbat is one of just three athletes competing from Lebanon. The country has never medaled in the Winter Olympics.


Liechtenstein — Marco Pfiffner

Clive Mason/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 23

One thing to know:Pfiffner finished 24th in the men’s slalom at Sochi 2014, a mark he’ll hope to improve on in Pyeongchang.


Lithuania —  Tomas Kaukėnas

Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

Sport: Biathlon

Age: 27

One thing to know:Kaukėnas’ best result was finishing 22nd at the World Championships in 2013 in the sprint event. That finish helped him earn a spot at Sochi 2014, where he finished 23rd in his best event after a series of misses on his final shots.


Luxembourg — Matthieu Osch

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 18

One thing to know:Osch is the first alpine skier to compete for Luxembourg since 1994.


Macedonia — Antonio Ristevski

Clive Rose/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 28

One thing to know:Ristevski has competed for Macedonia since the 2010 Games, serving as the country’s flag bearer that year.


Madagascar — Mialitiana Clerc

Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 16

One thing to know:Clerc is just the second athlete to compete in the Winter Olympics from Madagascar, and brings the country back into the games for the first time since 2006.


Malaysia —  Julian Yee

Victor Fraile/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 20

One thing to know:Yee is one of just two athletes competing from Malaysia in the country’s first year of competition. His routines incorporate the music of James Brown as well as Frankie Valli’s “Can’t Take My Eyes Off You.”


Malta —  Élise Pellegrin

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 26

One thing to know:Pellegrin made history as the first and only Olympic athlete from Malta at Sochi 2014, and is returning this year to represent her country again. She’s been keeping fans up to date with he progress through Facebook.


Mexico —  Sarah Schleper

Christophe Pallot/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 38

One thing to know:Schleper competed in four Winter Olympics with the United States before announcing her retirement in 2011. At her retirement race, she came down the mountain in a summer dress and picked up her son for the second half of the run. Now, she’s back in the Winter Games competing for Mexico after earning dual citizenship in 2014.


Moldova — Christopher Hoerl

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 28

One thing to know:Hoerl is an Austrian born skier who was recruited by the Moldovan ski federation in 2015. He keeps up a rather impressive Instagram presence if you’re interested in following along with his Olympic adventure.


Monaco — Olivier Jenot

Clive Rose/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 29

One thing to know:Jenot is competing in his second Winter Olympics after serving as Monaco’s flag bearer in 2014.


Mongolia —  Otgontsetseg Chinbat

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Sport: Corss-country skiing

Age: 26

One thing to know:Otgontsetseg finished in 70th out of 76 athletes in the women’s 10 kilometer classical at Sochi 2014, a mark she’ll look to improve on in Pyeongchang.


Montenegro — Eldar Salihović

Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 18

One thing to know:Salihović first represented his country at the Winter Youth Olympic Games, Lillehammer, Norway, and now takes his talents to the majors.


Morocco —  Adam Lamhamedi

Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 22

One thing to know:Lamhamedi won gold at the Winter Youth Olympics back in 2012, but did not fair as well when brought up to the main roster for Sochi 2014. Still, scanning through his pictures, you’d be hardpressed to find a happier Olympian.


Netherlands — Ireen Wüst

Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 31

One thing to know:Wüst took home three silvers and two golds from Sochi 2014, and will look to defend her title in the women’s 3000 meter in Pyeongchang.


New Zealand — Beau-James Wells

Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Sport: Freestyle skiing

Age: 23

One thing to know: Beau-James is just one of four Wells brothers with Olympic level talent on skis. With older brother Jossi sidelined with an injury, Beau-James is the family’s best hope at reaching the podium this year.


Nigeria —  Seun Adigun and Akuoma Omeoga

Sport: Bobsled

Age: 31, 25

One thing to know: Adigun began as a sprinter, competing at the 2012 Summer Games but failing to escape her initial heat. In 2016, she founded the Nigerian bobsled team, and now is an Olympian once again. She is also the niece of NBA Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon.


Norway — Marit Bjørgen

Giovanni Auletta/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 37

One thing to know:Bjørgen has won a medal at every Olympics she’s ever competed in, dating back to the 2002 Games, including taking home three golds from Sochi 2014. She’ll be a formidable force for any women’s biathlon competitors on their way to the podium.


Olympic Athletes from Russia — Evgenia Medvedeva

Takashi Aoyama/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 18

One thing to know:Pyeongchang 2018 will be Medvedeva’s first Olympics, but she’s already a force within the figure skating world, winning the past two World Championships. The 2018 could potentially take her to another level of stardom.


Pakistan — Muhammad Karim

Matt Roberts/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 22

One thing to know:Karim became just the second Pakistani athlete to compete in the Winter Olympics at Sochi 2014, and is renewing his spot this year in Pyeongchang.


Philippines — Michael Christian Martinez

Koki Nagahama/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 21

One thing to know:Martinez became the first Filipino to compete in the Winter Olympics since 1992 at Sochi 2014, and scored high enough to advance to the free skate.


Poland — Kamil Stoch

Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Ski jumping

Age: 30

One thing to know: Stoch took gold in both the normal hill and large hill competitions at Sochi 2014, and will attempt to defend both titles in Pyeongchang this year.


Portugal — Arthur Hanse

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 24

One thing to know: Hanse is the son of emigrants from Portugal who now reside in France. He competed with the French team until 2013 when he switched to represent Portugal.


Puerto Rico — Charles Flaherty

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 17

One thing to know: Flaherty will represent Puerto Rico at the Winter Olympics, becoming the first athlete to do so since 2002. Alpine skier Kristina Krone had qualified in 2006 and 2010, but the Puerto Rico Olympic Committee refused to acknowledge her effort.


Romania — Ania Monica Caill

Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 22

One thing to know:Caill is another skier who initially competed with France before seeking more opportunity elsewhere. With her Romanian mother, Caill joined the team in 2012 and has competed under the Romanian flag ever since.


San Marino — Alessandro Mariotti

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 19

One thing to know:Mariotti is the only athlete slated to compete from San Marino at the 2018 Games.


Serbia — Nevena Ignjatovic

Clive Rose/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 27

One thing to know:Ignjatovic has competed with the Serbian Winter Olympic team since they made their debut in 2010.


Singapore —  Cheyenne Goh

Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

Sport: Speed skating

Age: 18

One thing to know:Goh was born in Singapore, but moved to Canada when she was four and quickly picked up speed skating. She’ll now become the first Singaporean athlete to ever compete at the Winter Olympics.


Slovakia —  Anastasiya Kuzmina

Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Biathlon

Age: 33

One thing to know:Kuzmina won gold in the women’s sprint at Sochi 2014, finishing without a miss and taking home Slovakia’s only medal of the Games.


Slovenia —  Peter Prevc

Jan Hetfleisch/Getty Images

Sport: Ski jumping

Age: 25

One thing to know: After winning a silver and bronze at the 2014 Games, Prevc will look to finally strike gold in Pyeongchang.


South Africa —  Connor Wilson

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 19

One thing to know: After South Africa missed the 2014 Games, Wilson is charged with leading the country back into the Winter Olympics as the country’s lone competitor. He’s slated to race in men’s slalom and giant slalom.


Chinese Taipei —  Lien Te-an

Adam Pretty/Getty Images

Sport: Luge

Age: 23

One thing to know:Lien Te-an will be competing in his second Winter Olympics, after finishing 39th in the men’s singles competition at Sochi 2014.


Spain —  Javier Fernández

Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 26

One thing to know:Fernández came in fourth at Sochi 2014, just one spot shy of the podium. It was as close as any Spanish athlete got to a medal at the 2014 Games.


Sweden —  Charlotte Kalla

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 30

One thing to know: Having won gold in 2010 and silver in 2014 in the women’s 10 kilometer freestyle, Kalla is hoping to take back the right to call herself best in the world at Pyeongchang 2018.


Switzerland — Dario Cologna

Laurent Salino/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 31

One thing to know:Cologna specialises in distance races and has won gold in his past two Olympic-appearances. At Pyeongchang 2018, he’ll be defending champion of both the men’s 15 and 30 kilometers races.


Thailand — Vanessa-Mae

Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 39

One thing to know: In addition to being an Olympic skier, Vanessa-Mae is also a successful violinist, having sold 10 million albums worldwide. She was also accused of fixing races to ensure she claimed enough points to qualify to for Sochi 2014, but she was eventually cleared of any wrongdoing.


Timor-Leste — Yohan Goutt Goncalves

Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Sport: Alpine skiing

Age: 23

One thing to know:Goncalves became the first athlete to compete in the Winter Games for Timor-Leste at Sochi 2018, and remains the country’s only athlete to qualify a year later.


Togo —  Mathilde-Amivi Petitjean

Matthias Hangst/Getty Images

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 23

One thing to know:Petitjean is the only athlete from Togo competing this year, and was a part of the country’s debut Winter Olympics campaign at Sochi 2014.


Tonga —  Pita Taufatofua

Sport: Cross-country skiing

Age: 34

One thing to know: Shirtless Tongan flag bearer is back! And this time in the Winter Olympics. After making his Olympic dream come true by competing in judo during the Summer Games, Taufatofua pivoted to cross-country skiing and made it back for Pyeongchang 2018. It’s doubtful he repeats his shirtless performance though – it’s likely to be less than 15 degrees Fahrenheit at opening ceremonies.


Turkey —  Alper Uçar and Alisa Agafonova

Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 33, 27

One thing to know: This ice dancing pair has apparently been performing to a remix of “How Deep Is Your Love,” which at the very least sounds like a can’t-miss showing.


Ukraine — Vita Semerenko

Stanko Gruden/Agence Zoom/Getty Images

Sport: Biathlon

Age: 32

One thing to know:Semerenko is one of the most successful Winter Olympians in Ukrainian history, winning two medals at the 2014 Games. Her and her teammates will look to defend their gold in the women’s relay in Pyeongchang.


United States —  Chloe Kim

Clive Mason/Getty Images

Sport: Snowboarding

Age: 17

One thing to know: Kim is already a decorated snowboarder, and Pyeongchang 2018 could serve as her introduction to a much larger audience. She was the first woman to land back-to-back 1080s, a feat she accomplished at just 15 years old. She’s without a doubt the favourite to take halfpipe gold.


Uzbekistan —  Misha Ge

Xiaolu Chu/Getty Images

Sport: Figure skating

Age: 26

One thing to know:Ge came in 17th at Sochi 2014, but has performed well enough to compete again at Pyeongchang 2018.


Now check out all of the biggest stars from America and around the world that you can expect to see on the podium in Pyeongchang.

Al Bello/Getty Images

The biggest stars to watch at the 2018 Winter Olympics

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