Tonga's oiled-up Olympic flagbearer qualifies for Winter Games

Florence Fletcher
January 22, 2018

The Royal Tonga Ski Federation announced on Facebook that he finished with the points he needed to qualify for Pyeongchang.

Qualification points earned in roller-ski races can be applied for cross-country skiing and Taufatofua almost qualified on that basis alone.

Pita Taufatofua, who captured global attention as the oiled and topless Tongan flagbearer at the Rio Olympics, has gone "to the end of the world" to qualify as Tonga's first Winter Olympian. "This was the last day of the qualification process".

This will be the second Winter Olympics for Tonga since the 2014 Winter Olympic Games, where Bruno Banani represented Tonga in Luge.

Meet the athlete who enjoyed Brazil so much he taught himself a new sport to get back to the Olympics in double-quick time.

Women's March will focus on voter registration, electing more women, organizers say
A young child was among thousands of people who braved the rain to march for women's rights in downtown Vancouver on Saturday. Among the goals of this year's march are getting more Democrats to run for public office and bolstering voter registration .

Influenza might be spread simply by breathing
But even if you don't get a flu shot , it is imperative that if you have the symptoms of flu you get treatment. And it appears the infectious particles generated by breathing happen only with lower respiratory infections.

MI pro-lifers join anti-abortion march on Washington DC
The March for Life rally is held every year by pro-life protesters on the anniversary of the 1973 Roe vs. Adele, Mila Kunis, Cameron Diaz and Jennifer Lawrence were among those who took part.

The fighter decided to make the switch to cross-country skiing following his disappointing first-round exit in Brazil.

Taufatofua trained with roller skis due to the lack of snow in Tonga and failed in seven previous attempts to reach the qualifying requirements, succeeding only with his final attempt in Iceland on Saturday.

"And I thought there is one race left and it's at the end of the world".

"We sacrificed everything to be here - financially, I am in the worst position ever but I am the happiest ever". "I thought, "I have to give it my all - it's grave or glory" and I gave it absolutely everything".

"People don't see the hard work that goes behind (it), they just see the shiny guy that walks with the flag".

Other reports by

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER