Winter Youth Olympic Games
The Youth Olympic Winter Games were hosted for the first time ever in 2012 in Innsbruck and Seefeld, Austria. Also in the upcoming Youth Olympic Winter Games to be held 2016 in Lillehammer, Norway, ice hockey will be represented with two men’s and two women’s events. Male and female athletes born in 2000 and 2001 will be eligible to participate.
Ten teams go for gold
There will be five teams each in the men’s and women’s tournaments. Four teams for each tournament from eight different nations will be selected according to a special combined men’s and women’s under-18 world ranking that will be established after the Men's and Women's U18 World Championships are completed in April 2015. Norway as the host nation will be awarded one male team and one female team to participate in each of the tournaments.
Participating nations can select whether they wish to participate either in the men's or women's ice hockey tournament according to the following running order based on the ranking of the U18 men's and U18 women's national teams in the 2014 and 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship proram.
3. Czech Republic
19. Great Britain
Introducing the Skills Challenge
Besides the team tournaments, an individual Skills Challenge for women and men will be held. In this event, the best 15 female and 15 male athletes from all entered nations are allowed to compete as well as athletes from the host country Norway. The participants will be selected from a global qualification program based on the series of individual skill tests designed by the IIHF. The qualification events will be hold domestically and in a Global Skills Challenge Summit in July 2015.
The following Skills Challenge competitions make up the program:
- Fastest Lap
- Shooting Accuracy
- Skating Agility
- Fastest Shot
- Passing Precision
- Puck Control
More information on the Skills Challenge competitions and the participating countries and athletes can be found here.