The 2022 Winter Olympics is right around the corner where professional athletes from across the world will represent their country and aim for gold in their respective sports.
According to Outsports, there are at least 32 publicly out gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, pansexual and non-binary competing in Beijing for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. This is double the amount of competitors who participates in the 2018 games.
From February 4-20 the athletes will compete in seven different sports including ice skating, snowboarding and skeleton.
Get to know some of the out and proud professionals hoping to take home gold at this years Winter Games.
Kevin Aymoz– France
In 2020, the French figure skater came out as gay in a French documentary called "Faut qu'on parle" ("We Need to Talk"). The film introduces an indepth conversation about queerness and sports.
Andrew Blaser– USA
Blaser representing Team USA will be the first openly gay man to compete in skeleton at the Olympics. In an interview with Outsports, he mentions, “When we’re going to sliding and practice, I think it’s kind of funny and it’s a little bit of shock value,” he said.
“Just making people turn their head and kind of catch them off guard, which is a little bit of what I do with my jewelry and even my race suit, which is snakeskin. I’m the only one who has a snakeskin print suit.”
Brittany Bowe– USA
Speed-skater world record holder and gold medalist Brittany Bowe will also compete in the 1,500-meter race. Bowe was previously the only open LGBTQ+ woman on Team USA at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Belle Brockoff– Australia
IT’S OFFICIAL! I’m going to my third Olympic games! 🔥 Thank you to all who have supported me in this amazing journey! You know who you are 😊I am forever grateful!#Beijing2022 #WinterOlympics pic.twitter.com/gtLydCTSRt— Belle Brockhoff (@bellebrockhoff) January 23, 2022
Australian snowboarder Belle Brockhoff came out as a lesbian ahead of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi where she spoke out about Russia's anti-gay laws. The Beijing Games marks Brockoff’s third time competing in the Olympics.
Jason Brown– USA
Ice skater Jason Brown will compete in his second Olympic competition in Febuary. Brown officially came out in an Instagram post during Pride Month in June 2021.
"I believe that love will always win, and every story will unfold differently for each individual," he wrote in the post. "Mine unfolds a bit now. I'm gay, and that's a story still being written..."
Guillaume Cizeron– France
This even-time French National Champion and four-time World Champion made history by winning the European Championships five times in a row along with his ice skating partner, Gabriella Papadakis.
Amber Glenn– USA
Amber Glenn will serve as first alternate for the US figure-skating team. Unfortunately, after she tested positive for COVID-19 Glenn was forced to withdraw from the US Figure Skating Championships.
Glenn who identifies as bisexual and pansexual continues to be an advocate for LGBTQ rights and representation within figure skating world.
Gus Kenworthy– Great Britain
Kenworthy took home a silver medal in Sochi in 2014 as a member of Team USA. This year he will compete in the slopestyle and halfpipe events in Beijing as a part of Team Great Britian.
Timothy LeDuc –USA
Timothy LeDuc will be the first openly non-binary athlete in the Winter Olympics. During an Olympic press conference, LeDuc addressed this achievement and their hopes for future queer athletes.
“My hope is that when people see my story, it isn’t focused on me and saying, ‘Oh, Timothy is the first out non-binary person to achieve this level of success in sport,’” they said.
Bruce Mouat –Great Britain
Mouat will lead the British men's curling team and compete in the mixed doubles. The Scottish athlete took home a gold medal in European competition and silver in worlds.
Paul Poirier –Canada
This will be Poirier’s third Olympic competition. Poirier and his ice skating partner Piper Gilles won their first national title in 2020, and they took home a bronze medal at the 2021 ISU World Championships.
Eric Radford –Canada
Returning Canadian pairs figure skater Eric Radford became the first openly gay Winter Olympic gold medalist in 2018.
Radford is one of the most decorated and well-known pairs figure skater along with his former partner Meagan Duhamel. This year he will compete this year with Vanessa James, a French skater.
Ireen Wust –Netherlands
Dutch speed-skater Ireen Wurst identifies as bisexual and is recognized as the most decorated LGBTQ+ Olympian ever with 11 medals, including five gold.
Upon her fifth Olympic games, Wüst could become the first ever Olympian to win a gold medal at five separate games when she competes in the 1,000-meter, 1,500-meter, and team pursuit.
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