17 hours ago

Axios Denver

Welcome to a special Olympic edition of the Axios Denver newsletter.

๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ If the fireworks and pomp of yesterday's opening ceremony filled you with patriotic pride, we have you covered with what you need to know.

Situational awareness: Two important bookmarks to start โ€ฆ the Olympic competition calendar โ€ฆ and the NBC broadcast schedule.

Today's newsletter is 546 words โ€” a 2-minute read.

1 big thing: Olympic City, USA

The U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs. Photo: Tom Pennington/Getty Images

One state stands above the rest when it comes to the Olympics: Colorado.

  • From Denver and Boulder to Colorado Springs, dozens of Olympic athletes consider the state home or train here.

We probably don't have to tell you that Colorado Springs considers itself Olympic City, USA. It is home to:

  • The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee headquarters.
  • The Olympic and Paralympic Training Center.
  • The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Museum.
  • And dozens of national Olympic and sport governing bodies.

๐Ÿ“Œ Fun fact: About 15,000 athletes come to the training center each year, according to Colorado Springs officials.

  • More than 250 Olympic athletes call Colorado home.

What they're saying: "Colorado takes pride in every Team USA athlete," Gov. Jared Polis said in a statement ahead of the Games.

2. Meet our Colorado Olympians
Expand chart
Data: Team USA; Cartogram: Connor Rothschild/Axios

Colorado counts 34 athletes in the Olympic Games in more than 14 sports and 23 disciplines, according to Team USA.

๐Ÿ… Why it matters: We love to cheer for our hometown heroes as they go for gold!

By the numbers: Colorado's athlete count is the third highest in the nation โ€” behind California's 126 and Florida's 51, according to an analysis by John and Axios Sports' Jeff Tracy.

  • The athletes self-report their hometowns.
  • In reality, dozens more Olympians live in Colorado because they train here โ€” and the same goes for athletes from other countries, too.

We put together profiles to get you smarter, faster on our local athletes.

  • Quick tip: Click their linked names to follow them on Instagram. Many are posting behind-the-scenes photos from the Games.

Meet the athletes here

John's thought bubble: I'm so invested in our local athletes after learning about each of them, and I hope the profiles above do the same for you.

  • The athletes' discipline, mental and physical strength, and dedication are truly inspiring.
  • ๐Ÿ’ช I felt compelled to do pushups while writing this.
3. Putting our best foot forward

The USA Artistic Swim Team wearing the "Colorado"ย fromย Xero Shoes. Photo: USAAS

A Colorado footwear company made shoes for two U.S. Olympic teams.

What to know: Xero Shoes in Broomfield made a sandal for the U.S. artistic swimming team (recently rebranded from synchronized swimming) that the athletes will wear outside the pool. And the company provided shoes for the archery team.

  • "I will be glued to the television analyzing every frame to see if somebody's wearing our shoes," co-founder and CEO Steven Sashen told the Denver Business Journal.

Between the lines: Xero is a 12-year-old brand that specializes in casual and performance footwear, from trail running shoes to sandals.

  • The 54-person company is listed as one of the 5,000 fastest-growing companies in the country, DBJ reported.
4. Even more Olympics

The U.S. team at the opening ceremony Friday in Tokyo. Photo: Hannah McKay Pool/Getty Images

The Summer Games runs through Aug. 8, and we'll keep you updated on how our Colorado athletes fare.

๐Ÿ‘‰ Worthy of your time: Find ongoing Olympic coverage here. A rundown to get you oriented:

  • Exclusive poll: What the Olympics tells us about patriotism. Go deeper.
  • Pandemic drug-testing pause raises questions about Olympics. Go deeper.
  • About 100 U.S. Olympic athletes are unvaccinated, team doctor says. Go deeper.
  • The dire economics of the Olympics. Go deeper.
  • The Olympics will feature a historic number of LGBTQ athletes. Go deeper.
  • Interactive graphic: See which countries have been Olympic winners over time. Go deeper.

Don't miss: Tune into Axios.com or the Axios app later today for a broader deep dive into the Olympics.

Did you enjoy this special Saturday newsletter โ€” or is it too much?

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