Over the weekend, the United States Olympic Luge Team announced they are the first Olympic team in the country to advocate for and accept bitcoin in donation. With only two months from starting Winter Games in South Korea, there’s just enough time to promote both a crazy, cool olympic sport while promoting a cool, crazy way to do money.
USA Olympic Team Goes Crypto
Feet first, supine, steering with legs and shoulders, luge olympians have been known to reach coasting speeds in the high eighties (mph) and one hundred and forties (km) while sled racing down winding half pipe tubes. The sport is said to date as far back as the 15th century.
“By hodling bitcoin with the express goal of holding on through the 2022 and 2026 Olympic Games, the sport hopes to change from being underfunded to being able to support full teams on the World Cup level at the same time as developing grassroots youth programs to develop athletes,” Mr. Danco explained.
And now seems especially the perfect storm. Prices for bitcoin are routinely hitting 19,000 USD across global exchanges without much letup in sight. And should the team enter Pyeongchang, South Korea in February with enough bitcoin to fund their efforts, chances are it’ll be an even bigger story as South Koreans are absolutely bonkers for cryptocurrency.
“Bitcoin is still in its early days, and hats off to USA Luge for being both brave and prescient to ride this wave,” Mr. Danco congratulated. The earliest recorded example of cryptocurrency impacting the games was back in 2014 when dogecoin was sent to the Jamaican bobsled team as more a wink than genuine endowment.
Crazy Sport, Crazy Money, Country Crazy for Crypto
This is South Korea’s first Winter Games, having hosted Summer Games twice in its history. Winter brings competition in more than a dozen icy sports, including cross-country skiing, figure skating, hockey, speed skating, and snowboarding. Some 88 countries will participate and compete. Luge includes single and doubles, and is also coed. Olympic luge competition will be held at Alpensia Sliding Centre, which was seemingly built for the upcoming games. It’s a sprawling facility, costing more than 100 million USD to construct.
“You know, we hear a lot of jokes about lugers being crazy, and people don’t know why we do it,” Gordy Sheer, olympic medalist and the team’s marketing director offered. “But luge is something that gets into your blood and transforms your life…and the bitcoiners we’ve met know exactly what it’s like to be all in on something that the world doesn’t appreciate yet. We’ve looked at bitcoin hard, and it is definitely a risk-reward we understand and are eager to take.”
Images courtesy of Pixabay, US Luge, Olympic Games.