Dates: 9–22 February
skiing first appeared on the Olympic programme in 1936, when men’s and
women’s combined events were held. Now, the Olympic programme features
ten medal events, with men and women both contesting downhill, super
combined, super-G, giant slalom and slalom. The Sochi 2014 Alpine skiing
events will open with the men’s downhill on 9 February, when Norway’s
Aksel Lund Svindal will be looking to improve on the silver medal he won
in Vancouver in 2010.
Dates: 8–22 February
debuted at the Winter Games in 1960, when the only event was the men’s
20km individual race. The relay was added in 1968, while the 10km sprint
debuted in 1980, before women’s events were first held in 1992. Pursuit
and mass start events were added in 2002 and 2006 respectively, while
Sochi 2014 will see the mixed relay make its Olympic debut. Reigning
women’s 15km champion Tora Berger, of Norway, will be eyeing more gold
in Sochi, having enjoyed a superb 2013 World Cup season.
Biathlon mixed relay – Mixed
Teams will comprise of two men and two women. Women will open
the relay, completing the first two 6km legs. The men then complete the
next two 7.5km legs.
Dates: 16–23 February
bobsleigh race took place at the first Winter Games in 1924, with a
two-man event added four years later and the women’s two-man event
debuting at the 2002 Games. Swiss duo Beat Hefti and Thomas Lamparter
have already tasted success in Sochi, having won the two-man event at
the World Cup in February 2013. The home crowd, meanwhile, is sure to
get behind Alexander Zubkov as he aims to lead the Russian four-man team
to Olympic success at the Sanki Sliding Centre.
Dates: 8–23 February
Cross-country skiing has been contested at every edition of the Winter
Games, dating back to 1924, and Sochi 2014 will feature 12 events (six
for men and six for women) ranging from a 1.5km sprint to the 50km (men)
and 30km (women) mass start races. Norway’s reigning sprint and
individual pursuit Olympic champion Marit Bjørgen is again expected to
challenge for medals in the women’s events, while her compatriot,
Olympic gold medallist Petter Northug, will look to dominate the men’s
Dates: 10–21 February
featuring at the first Winter Games, in 1924, curling did not appear on
the Olympic programme again until 1998, when the men’s and women’s
titles were won by Switzerland and Canada respectively. Canada won the
men’s title in 2006 and 2010, while Sweden’s women – led by skip Anette
Norberg – also topped the podium in both 2006 and 2010. With Norberg now
retired, Sweden will be looking to new skip Margaretha Sigfridsson to
help them complete a hat-trick of titles.
Dates: 6–22 February
to the singles, pairs and ice dancing events, a figure skating team
contest will also be held in Sochi – marking the event’s debut on the
Olympic programme. Three-time world champion Patrick Chan, of Canada,
will be aiming to win his first Olympic medal in the men’s singles,
while South Korea’s Yuna Kim will be hoping to defend her women’s
singles title. Russian hopes are likely to rest on world pairs champions
Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov.
Figure skating team event – Mixed
Featuring teams made up of six skaters – one male, one female,
one pair and one ice dance couple. Points will be awarded for each
routine and the team with the highest number of aggregate points will
Dates: 6–21 February
will see four new events join the freestyle skiing programme, with both
a men’s and a women’s event in ski slopestyle and a men’s and a women’s
event in ski halfpipe joining ski cross, aerials and moguls. Great
Britain’s James Woods is the reigning World Cup champion in the men’s
ski slopestyle and will be aiming to win his country’s first ever Winter
Olympic skiing medal in Sochi, while Switzerland’s two-time world
champion Virginie Faivre will be the woman to beat in the ski halfpipe.
Ski halfpipe – Men’s and Women’s
Each athlete will perform an array of big airs and other tricks
in the halfpipe before being judged on technical difficulty, style,
flow, variation and execution.
Ski slopestyle – Men’s and Women’s
Skiers combine airs and tricks on a course featuring rails and
a variety of jumps before being scored on execution, difficulty of line,
landing and their use of the course.
Dates: 8–23 February
has been played at every edition of the Winter Games, with the women’s
event making its debut in Nagano in 1998. In Vancouver in 2010, hosts
Canada enjoyed a fairy-tale ending to the men’s tournament as Sidney
Crosby scored the gold medal-winning goal seven minutes and 40 seconds
into overtime to secure a 3-2 win over the USA. The Canadian women also
delighted the home crowd by winning their third successive Olympic
title, following a 2-0 win over the USA.
Dates: 8–13 February
featured at the Olympic Winter Games in Innsbruck in 1964 and has
remained on the programme ever since, with Sochi 2014 marking the debut
of the mixed team relay event. Germany enjoyed a clean sweep of the 2013
World Cup titles, with reigning Olympic champion Felix Loch and 2013
world champion Natalie Geisenberger claiming the men’s and women’s
crowns respectively, while Tobias Wendl and Tobias Artl topped the
Luge team relay – Mixed
Each country will field a men’s singles sled, a doubles sled
and a women’s singles sled. All three will slide down the track, one
after another, with the clock stopping only after the third sled has
crossed the finish line.
Dates: 12–20 February
combined, which features ski jumping and a cross-country skiing race,
has appeared at every Winter Games since 1924. The results of the ski
jumping element determine the starting places for the cross-country
race, with the jumping points converted into time penalties. France’s
Jason Lamy Chappuis, who won the individual normal hill/10 km event in
Vancouver in 2010, will be among the medal favourites again after
finishing second overall in the 2013 World Cup.
Dates: 10–21 February
speed skating was added to the Olympic programme at the 1992 Winter
Games, with one individual and one relay event for both men and women.
Additional individual distances were added in 1994, before men’s and
women’s 1,500m events joined the programme in 2002. In Sochi, men and
women will contest the 500m, 1,000m and 1,500m, while there will also be
a 3,000m relay for women and a 5,000m relay for men.
Dates: 13–15 February
skeleton featured on the Olympic programme at the 1928 and 1948 Winter
Games, which were both held in St Moritz, where the sport originated on
the famed Cresta Run. Following a 54-year absence, skeleton reappeared
on the programme in 2002 in Salt Lake City, when a women’s event was
also added. The Olympic skeleton competition consists of four heats run
over two days, with the gold medal going to the competitor with the
fastest aggregate time.
Dates: 8–17 February
has been contested at every Winter Games, but Sochi 2014 will mark the
first time that women will compete in the event at the Games. From 1924
to 1960, only the individual large hill event was held at the Games,
with the individual normal hill being added in 1964 followed by the team
large hill event in 1988. Austria’s Gregor Schlierenzauer won the men’s
overall World Cup title in 2013, while Japan’s 2012 Youth Olympic
champion Sara Takanashi took the women’s World Cup crown.
Women’s ski jumping – Women’s
The women’s normal hill event will mark the first time that
women will compete in ski jumping at the Winter Games.
Dates: 6-22 February
is the newest discipline on the Winter Games programme, having first
been held in Nagano in 1998, when giant slalom and halfpipe events were
contested. Snowboard cross was added in 2006, while Sochi 2014 will see
slopestyle and parallel special slalom events make their first
appearances at the Games. The last two men’s Olympic halfpipe titles
have been won by American Shaun White, who wowed the crowd in Vancouver
in 2010, scoring an Olympic record 48.4 points out of 50.
Snowboard slopestyle – Men’s and Women’s
Athletes will be scored after descending a course consisting of
rails and a variety of jumps, as they combine big airs and technical
tricks into one run.
Snowboard parallel slalom – Men’s and Women’s
Riders will race two at a time down the same slope on two parallel
courses, outlined with gates and triangular flags.
Dates: 8–22 February
skating has been part of the Winter Games since the first edition, in
1924, with women’s events added to the programme in 1960. In Sochi, men
and women will each race over 500m, 1,000m, 1,500m and 5,000m. Men will
also contest the 10,000m, while women will also race over 3,000m. Since
2006, men’s and women’s team pursuit events have also been held. The
Netherlands’ Ireen Wüst and Sven Kramer are the athletes to watch in the
women’s and men’s events respectively.