Olympic figure skater Keegan Messing is Canada’s biggest fan in Beijing

Feb 12 2022, 11:43 pm

Keegan Messing arrived to the 2022 Beijing Olympics a little late. 

Seems like he’s making up for lost time. 

Messing has been making the rounds at Canada’s events, cheering loud and proud for his fellow citizens at the Winter Games with signature jumbo flag in hand. 

“I brought the flag and the team spirit with me and I’ll be cheering them on every step of the way,” he told Anastasia Bucsis of CBC. 

He’s not about to leave either. 

Though his events are done, Messing is participating in the Gala Exhibition, a non-medal event that features more personality-centric performances featuring some of the Olympics’ most popular skaters.

That means there’ll be plenty of extra events for Messing to take in in the meantime. 

“I’m just going happy-go-lucky,” Messing said. “I’m still trying to find a schedule to tell me what’s going on. I’ve got the gala, so I’m staying here until the end of the games and I get to cheer everybody on.”

So far, Messing has been spotted cheering on Canada at the men’s ice hockey game against the United States on Friday. He was also in attendance to see Isabelle Weidemann win silver for Canada in women’s 5,000-metre speed-skating event on Thursday.

The flag is a signature of Messing’s. 

And a calling card that a skating event, whether it be figure, speed, or ice hockey, is happening. 

He’s earned the more recent celebrations.

Messing was delayed in his arrival to the games because of COVID-19 protocols, missing the team event while in quarantine for over a week in Vancouver after failing to produce the negative tests required to board a plane for Beijing.

He was eventually cleared, and had to fly from Vancouver to Montreal for his fourth test, and then through Milan to Beijing before arriving just in time to compete in the men’s figure skating event. 

Messing finished 11th despite the ordeal.

“This is probably one of the greatest challenges I’ve had for mental health,” Messing said. “And my coach, Ralph, there were times when I finally got cleared to go train again, we were going to the rink and i was like saying, ‘if we make it to Beijing…’ And he said, ‘no, say it, we’re going to Beijing.’ I didn’t want to say it. I didn’t want to get hopes up to have the rug taken out from me again. He was having me say it out loud. ‘I am going to Beijing. We will get there.’ Keeping the positive mindset was such a challenge.

“It was a struggle. There were some dark times.”

Now, it’s smiles. 

And a bit of flag-waving for the proud Canadian. 

Aaron VickersAaron Vickers

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