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  • Kelly VanderBeek OLY, Broadcaster, Trainer, Artist

Will Sport Prevail - Beijing Games?

Updated: Mar 18, 2022

Over the last 9 months I have helped cover a wide range of Olympic sports. Most recently, winter sports like Alpine Ski Racing and Long Track Speed Skating. Last summer I was also a part of the team in Japan covering the Tokyo Games.

I have seen, first hand, a lot of sport and a lot of COVID management.

Now, with Beijing Games around the corner, I am nervous. I'll be frank, these are the first Olympic Games I'm not excited to attend. As omicron surges and fears mount, on top of the history of China's human rights violations, I can't help but wonder - will sport prevail?

This is often the question before any Olympic Games, because in this phase the narrative remains largely negative. Full of questions and concerns, nothing is out of reach when the spotlight that is the Olympics descends on a Nation. For Vancouver it was the cities homeless and substance abuse struggles that drew attention. In Sochi it was the threat of war (even more ominous now, given current events) and the exorbitant costs as Putin built his personal playground. Most recently, Tokyo faced countless struggles as they navigated having to delay the Games an entire calendar year.

Still, sport PREVAILED.

From the moment the flame is lit, the narrative changes. The focus moves onto those striving for excellence and the unifying ability of the Games themselves.

Sport Wins.

But will it again? With the continued struggles of the pandemic, China's social injustices, cyber security concerns, etc. etc...

My belief is yes, and I hope to be proven right.

Below is a collection of my images from the most recent events I covered for CBC.

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