10 Cool Facts About The Winter Olympics Games Sochi, where the 2014 Winter Olympics is hosted, is Russia’s sunshine destination. A 37-hour train ride from Moscow, it’s located in Russia’s Deep South, on the Black Sea, and boasts palm trees, pebble beaches and sulfur hot springs. Organizers are also depending on 500 snow guns and 710,000 cubic meters of snow taken from the mountains last winter and kept in storage. Norway has won the most medals (263) at the Winter Games. Sixteen nations competed in the first winter Olympic Games that were held in France in 1924. The first winter Olympics was called The International Winter Sports Week that lasted 11 days. The five Olympic rings represent the five major regions of the world. Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceana, and every national flag in the world includes one of the five colors. No country in the Southern Hemisphere has ever hosted a Winter Games. Nobody has won more medals at the Winter Games than cross-country skier Bjorn Dählie of Norway, who has 12. Women did not compete in the Olympics until 1912. Only 11 women competed in the first winter Olympic Games. Vonetta Flowers was the first African American to win a Gold Medal in the Winter Olympics in 2002. In 1988 the first Jamaican Bobsled team competed in Canada. They had little practice and had to borrow sleds from other countries. Although finishing in a crash they showed power and bravery. The first and only athlete to win winter and summer Olympic Games medals in the same year, 1988, was Christa Luding-Rothenburger. She won in speed skating and cycling. The 1912 Olympics was the last time that gold medals were solid gold. Ever since, they’ve been silver with gold plating.