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Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics add seven new events

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Seven new events were added to the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic program:

Women’s monobobsled
Short track mixed team relay
Ski jumping mixed team event
Freestyle skiing big air (men and women)
Aerials mixed team event
Snowboard cross mixed team event

The additions bring the Winter Olympic total number of events to 109, an all-time high and nearly double the amount of events at the 1992 Winter Games.

The number of women’s hockey teams will increase from eight to 10 in 2022, but the overall number of athletes is expected to be fewer than the 2,933 in PyeongChang. The International Olympic Committee said athlete quotas will decrease in some sports, but no events have been contracted. Alpine skiing’s super combined events are still under review as to whether they will remain in the Olympic program.

The IOC said the Winter Olympics will have its highest-ever gender balance in 2022, rising from 41 percent female athletes to more than 45 percent.

The IOC had a “long discussion” about adding a women’s event in Nordic combined, the only sport without a women’s event in the Winter Games, IOC sports director Kit McConnell said.

“Nordic combined, and women’s in particular, still need to be developed further in terms of universality [the number of countries with Olympic-level athletes], in terms of the level of the athletes,” McConnell said.

The IOC also weighed whether to add a four-woman bobsled event rather than women’s monobobsled. The Games have two-man and two-woman events and a four-man event.

McConnell said the International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation was “very supportive” of monobob, in part because it is already on the Youth Olympic program.

“Woman’s four-man bob costs three or four times of monobob,” McConnell said. “We felt there would be more universality in the women’s monobob. We really didn’t see more than a handful of countries really developing women’s four-man programs because of the costs involved.”

Beijing will mark the third straight Winter Olympics to add mixed-gender events. In 2014, mixed relays in biathlon and luge debuted, as well as the figure skating team event. In PyeongChang, a mixed Alpine skiing team event and mixed doubles curling debuted.

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Best freestyle skiing moments from 2018 Winter Olympics

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Mikael Kingsbury continued his domination on the moguls course, while the freeskiers showed just how much halfpipe and slopestyle have progressed over the last four years. Here’s a look back at some of the top moments from the PyeongChang Games in freestyle skiing.

NBCOlymipcs.com: Watch every USA freeskiing medal win at the 2018 Olympics

Mikael Kingsbury finally adds Olympic gold to his collection
Canadian mogul skier Mikael Kingsbury came to PyeongChang with a record 48 World Cup victories, six straight World Cup titles and two world championships gold medals. But Olympic gold was still the one thing missing from his résumé.

Kingsbury had finished second behind countryman Alex Bilodeau at the last Olympics, but this time, he emerged with the gold medal and showed why he just might be the most dominant athlete in winter sports right now.

Jon Lillis honors his brother Mikey
U.S. skier Jon Lillis and his two younger brothers, Chris and Mikey, dreamed of going to the Olympics together as aerialists. But last October, Mikey unexpectedly died in his sleep at the age of 19.

Lillis, the reigning world champion in men’s aerials, made it to the Olympics and while there, honored his brother’s memory. During the Opening Ceremony, he walked into the stadium while wearing a special pendant that contained some of Mikey’s ashes. He then competed while wearing Mikey’s old ski suit, making it into the second round of the finals and finishing in eighth place.

Read the full story by clicking here 

Men’s freeski halfpipe: A primer

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our years ago, U.S. freeskiers swept the podium in men’s slopestyle. Could there be a sweep in the halfpipe this time around?

Each nation that earns quota spots can only send a maximum of four halfpipe skiers to PyeongChang. The Olympic selection process for the U.S. halfpipe team was a brutal one, with several world-class talents such as Gus Kenworthy missing the team. (Kenworthy did make the slopestyle team though.)

Over the course of the Olympic selection events, the deep U.S. team was paired down to its final four, and all four of those skiers have the talent to win gold.

As for the possibility of a medal sweep, that’s in play too. Three U.S. skiers made up the podium at last month’s X Games, which is as close to an Olympic preview as it gets.

Here’s a look at the stars of the halfpipe — from the U.S. and rest of the world — who will be hunting for medals when competition gets underway Tuesday in PyeongChang (Monday night in the U.S.).

Read the full preview at NBCOlympics.com