All sport involves some form of running, jumping, or throwing. The decathlon involves all of these. You don’t have to be the best of each of them to win the gold, but you have to be pretty good at all of them. That’s pretty incredible.
It seems simple enough. You sit on a couple of metal rails and slide down an icy track. The skill is staying in the middle of the track and not hitting the sides. And yet it’s pretty exciting. These folks are traveling at like 110 mph. That’s crazy! And skeleton gets extra points because they go head first.
3. Cycling (road race, not the track stuff)
I think cycling is a fascinating sport, especially if you watch it in real time. There is so much strategy and teamwork that goes into it. What makes the Olympic event even more interesting is that it’s a one-day event. More cycling road races are multi-day events, with days where the route is flat and days where it’s not. These races favor the climbers, because you can gain a whole bunch of time on the inclines. A one-day race has inclines and flat portions, and doesn’t really favor the sprinters or the climbers. It’s almost a free-for-all, and takes a particular strategy. Watching the bikers sprint to the end line after riding for 100+ miles is pretty exciting.
I know it’s not an official Olympic sport, but it happens so often it might as well be. And people are getting better and better at it. Russia had a whole state-sponsored program to get their athletes doped up. It is miles ahead of what West Germany was doing back in the 70’s when they didn’t even try to hide it. There is a skill to doping that, at some point, the World Olympic committee must recognize.
It’s the simplicity of the sport. It’s kind of like soccer or basketball, expect there’s no dribbling. You run around carrying the ball like you would in rugby, just without the tackling. It’s like a sport a bunch of kids on a playground would make up, except this one is played by world class athletes on an international stage. I guess handball is more popular in Europe. I am not even sure if the U.S.A. has a team (I don’t feel like looking up either one of those claims). The only time we get to see it (unless you have ESPN 4) is during the Olympics. I feel like I’d be very good at this sport.