NewsOlympicsPhoto GalleryRacingRace Suits of the Olympic Games: Women’s Skate Sprint Edition

Gavin KentchFebruary 19, 2022
Enkhtuul Ariunsanaa of Mongolia skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification at the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. (photo: NordicFocus)

We recently brought you a roundup of Olympic race suits from some more traditional nordic powers, focusing on those nations that had at least four men on site in Zhangjiakou and so were able to field a team in the men’s 4 x 10-kilometer relay. This article now turns its attention to athletes from some countries that you might not initially think of when you think of nordic skiing, as well as more traditional ski countries (Poland, Ukraine) that did not field a team in the men’s relay.

These photos, all of which are copyright NordicFocus, are from the qualification round of the women’s freestyle sprint, early in the Olympic Games on February 8.

Argentina

Nahiara Díaz González (ARG) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification, Feb. 8. (photo: NordicFocus) Her uniform evokes the “sky blue and whites” of the better-known Argentine national football team, La Albiceleste.

Armenia

Katya Galstyan (ARM) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit is a largely stock dark Swix model, with the Armenian flag on the right leg and shoulder. The Armenian coat of arms, which features an eagle regardant dexter and a lion regardant sinister, is on her headband.

Australia

Jessica Yeaton (AUS) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Yeaton, who grew up largely in Anchorage and skied for the same high school (South Anchorage High School) as double Olympic siblings Scott and Caitlin Patterson, sports a green and yellow uniform typical of Australian teams in international sport. Wikipedia explains, “although the country’s flag has the colours blue, red and white, the [national football team] uses shades of green and yellow. That’s because, unlike many national teams, who base their colours on the flag, the Australian team uses as a base the colours of a typical plant in the country, the acacia, which has green leaves and yellow flowers.” When Yeaton teamed up with fellow Anchorage expat Casey Wright (Wright skied collegiately for the University of Alaska Anchorage) for the team sprint a few days later, they augmented their face tape with “Aussie Aussie Aussie / Oi Oi Oi” on alternating cheeks.
Austria

Lisa Unterweger (AUT) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her kit largely tracks the two colors of the Austrian flag, white and red.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sanja Kusmuk (BIH) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her kit appears, awkwardly, to be precisely the same design, on an Odlo race suit, as both Switzerland and France, though with different colors. You may decide for yourself who wore it better.

Brazil

Jaqueline Mourão (BRA), who is 46 years old and representing Brazil in her eighth Olympic Games (three summer games and five winter games since 2004), skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) The suit incorporates the blue, yellow, and green of the Brazilian flag on the extremities, while white predominates through the torso and upper legs. Her ski poles appear to be from bespoke manufacturer Zaveral Racing Equipment, based in Wells Bridge, New York.

Croatia

Tena Hadžić (CRO) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) The checkerboard design is instantly recognizable to anyone who follows international sport (you may remember this design from such sporting events as the 2018 France–Croatia men’s World Cup Final); per Wikipedia, “The red and white motif is based on the Croatian checkerboard (šahovnica), which has been used to represent Croats since the Middle Ages.” But not used to represent Hadžić since any time before 2004, which is when she was born: yes, Hadžić logged three Olympic starts before her 18th birthday. And what are you doing with your life?

Greece

Μαρία Ντάνου, or Maria Ntanou (GRE), skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit neatly evokes the flag of Greece, “popularly referred to as the ‘blue and white’ (Greek: Γαλανόλευκη) or the ‘sky blue and white’ (Κυανόλευκη),” per Wikipedia.

Iceland

Kristrún Guðnadóttir (ISL) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit uses the three colors of the Icelandic flag, red, white, and blue, though it does not specifically represent the Nordic cross that the flag contains.

Kazakhstan

Irina Bykova (KAZ) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit incorporates the gold and blue colors of the Kazakh flag. Per Wikipedia: “The sky blue background symbolises the peace, freedom, cultural, and ethnic unity of Kazakh people … . The sun represents a source of life and energy. It is also a symbol of wealth and abundance; the sun’s rays are a symbol of the steppe’s grain which is the basis of abundance and prosperity.”

Latvia

Kitija Auzina (LAT) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) The Latvian flag is described as a “carmine field bisected by a narrow white stripe,” as visible on Auzina’s headband. The suit ably incorporates the carmine (dark red) of the flag, though it has black, rather than white, as a contrasting color. That said, the coordination with the Swix Triac 4.0 Aero poles is superb; it would only be better if she were on red and black Alpina skate boots.

Lithuania

Ieva Dainytė (LTU) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Which possibly occasioned a doubletake from anyone who watched U.S. Olympian Luke Jager race as a junior for West Anchorage High School (Jager is on the left of the linked image, fellow Olympian Gus Schumacher, who skied for Service High School, on the right). You may, once more, decide for yourself, who wore it better?

Mongolia

Enkhtuul Ariunsanaa (MGL) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) The colors of the Mongolian flag are red, blue, and yellow, all of which are present in this suit. “The blue stripe represents the eternal blue sky, and the red stripes thriving for eternity,” Wikipedia explains. The coordination with the red and blue KV+ Tornado poles is a nice touch.

Poland

Weronika Kaleta (POL) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Kaleta skis collegiately for the University of Colorado and has raced both European World Cup and American SuperTour races this year. Her suit features the two colors of the Polish flag, which is a relatively simple horizontal bicolor of red and white.

Romania

Tímea Lőrincz (ROU) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) The three stripes of the Romanian tricolor flag are cobalt blue, chrome yellow, and vermilion red. These three colors, and no others, are present in this race suit. Lőrincz represented Romania in her third Olympics. Her name contains the rare double acute accent, on ő.

Slovakia (ft. alt. national-team race suit)

Alena Procházková (SVK) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus)
Barbora Klementová (SVK) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification, same race, same day, wearing a completely different version of the Slovakian kit. (photo: NordicFocus) The flag of Slovakia looks like this: 🇸🇰. While both race suits are very neat, Procházková’s version more ably evokes the Slovakian coat of arms, which feature on the hoist side of the flag and the lower right leg and arm of Procházková’s race suit.

South Korea

Dasom Han (KOR) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) The colors of the flag of South Korea are black, white, red, and blue, in an intricate design present in the patch on Han’s right shoulder. The logo on the right leg is for the suit manufacturer, Descente.

Thailand

Karen Chanloung (THA) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit mirrors the red, white, and blue of the Thai flag, augmented by blue Salomon boots and skis and KV+ poles with all three colors. The colors of the Thai flag are “said to stand for nation–religion–king, an unofficial motto of Thailand: red for the land and people, white for religions, and blue for the monarchy,” per Wikipedia.

Turkey

Ayşenur Duman (TUR) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit features the red and white of the Turkish flag. It does not appear to specifically depict or evoke the white star and crescent that are present on the flag.

Ukraine

Maryna Antsybor (UKR) skis in the women’s skate sprint qualification. (photo: NordicFocus) Her suit incorporates the two colors of the Ukrainian flag, a blue and yellow bicolor.

Gavin Kentch

Gavin Kentch is a lifelong Alaskan. He skis with the Alaska Pacific University Masters team in Anchorage, plays with his two adorable daughters, and occasionally works as a solo attorney. He has a cat named Marit. He was probably on snow this year before you were.

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