The West African nation of Ghana does not belong to countries that experience winter but it will be represented at the Winter Olymics due for Pyeongchang in South Korea later this year.
Ghana’s qualification was made possible by one Akwasi Frimpong, a Ghanaian – born skeleton athlete. He will become the second Ghanaian to participate in the Winter Olympics.
Skeleton is an individual winter sliding sport in which a person rides a small sled, known as a skeleton bobsled (or sleigh), down a frozen track while lying face down (prone).
Through skeleton I’m trying to show people to come out of their comfort zone as much as possible and get into something different. We cannot all be Abedi Pele, we cannot all be Usain Bolt, but we all have talent that we can definitely use.
He managed to make the International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation (IBSF) mark of ranking in the top 60 by middle of January, hence booking him a slot. Frimpong who was born and raised in Ghana left for the Netherlands at the age of eight.
His official portal describes him as an athlete, entrepreneur and motivational speaker. He has previously competed for the Netherlands and the United States but aways fell short of qualifying for the main Olympics.
He only switched from bobsled to skeleton in 2015. “With all the things I went through as an (track and field) athlete in the Netherlands and the US, I have learned to face fear. I have learned that it’s possible,” Frimpong said in an interview with Business Insider last year.
“Through skeleton I’m trying to show people to come out of their comfort zone as much as possible and get into something different. We cannot all be Abedi Pele, we cannot all be Usain Bolt, but we all have talent that we can definitely use,” Frimpong explained.
Till Frimpong came into the picture, Ghana’s only appearance at the Winter Sports was back in 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia where Kwame Nkrumah-Acheampong, popularly known as the “Snow leopard”, represented the country in the slalom ski event.