Winter Olympics

What Sports Will Hold the First Winter Olympic Medal Events?

Here are the sports that will hold the first medal events at the Beijing Games

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

The 2022 Winter Olympics officially began with the opening ceremony on Friday in Beijing. Now, it's time to win some medals.

Over 300 medals will be awarded over the course of the Games, and the first will be handed out early on Saturday morning.

Here's a look at the first sports where medal events will take place, and some of the contenders to take home the hardware.

Cross-country skiing

Sixty-five women from 24 nations will compete in the skiathlon, beginning at 2:45 a.m. ET on Saturday. The skiathlon is a 15-kilometer race, with 7.5 kilometers run in classic style cross-country skiing and the other 7.5 kilometers in freestyle skiing. Norway's Therese Johaug and Heidi Went, along with Sweden's Ebba Andersson, are favored to medal. Team USA will have four athletes in the race -- Jessie Diggins, Rosie Brennan, Hailey Swirbul and Julia Kern.

Speed skating

Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics

Watch all the action from the Beijing Olympics live on NBC

Record-Breaking Triumphs, Heart-Breaking Failures Highlight Winter Olympics

Olympic Flame Extinguished in Beijing, Italy Waves in Milano Cortina 2026

The women's 3000m speed skating race will take place at 3:35 a.m. ET on Saturday. There will be 20 women from 12 nations vying for medals, with Mia Kilburg representing Team USA. Carlijn Achtereekte and Antoinette de Jong, two Dutch skaters who won gold and bronze, respectively, in this event in 2018, will compete.


Biathlon, the sport that combines cross-country skiing and rifle shooting, will award medals at the 4x6km mixed relay. The action begins at 4 a.m. ET on Saturday as the American team of Clare Egan, Susan Dunklee, Paul Schommer and Sean Doherty will look to bring home a medal.

Ski jumping

The women's normal hill individual trial run, first round and final round will all take place on Saturday, beginning at 4:45 a.m. ET. The final round is expected to start at 6:35 a.m. ET. There are 40 skiers in the field, headlined by Team USA's Anna Hoffmann. Japan's Sara Takanashi, Germany's Katharina Althaus and Slovenia's Ema Klinec are expected to contender for medals.

Short track speed skating

The mixed team relay, which is a 2000-meter race, will begin at 7:23 a.m. ET on Saturday. The quarterfinals will be held first, following by the semifinals at 7:53 a.m., and then the finals at 8:18 a.m. Team USA will compete in the third quarterfinal race against Hungary, Japan and the Russian Olympic Committee.

Freestyle skiing

The men’s moguls will conclude on Saturday morning. Ten skiers have already advanced to the final after their performance in the first qualifying race, but the remaining non-qualifiers will compete in a final qualifying race on Saturday at 5 a.m. ET to try and stay alive. The final race, which will feature 20 skiers, is set for 6:30 a.m. Team USA's Cole McDonald and Dylan Walczyk have already secured their spots in the final event.

Contact Us