– A demonstration sport at the 1972 Games in Munich, badminton became an official Olympic sport at the 1992 Barcelona Games.
– Few people know it, but badminton is the world's fastest racquet sport. The shuttlecock, that missile of cork and goose feathers, can whip across the net as fast as 260 kilometres per hour. The best don't duck.
– Beijing's badminton facility is touted as the best ever. Tiny air-conditioning vents were built under 7,000 spectators' seats to keep everyone cool but not create drafts that might affect how the shuttle cock flys.
– Men and women compete in singles, doubles and mixed doubles. The sport has traditionally been dominated by China, Indonesia and Korea.
– Canada has never won an Olympic medal in badminton, but Rice hopes to change that. While she'll have to be on her game in Beijing to beat the top seeds, she has beaten three of the world's Top 10 women. She says Canadians have a different, "a physical, workhouse" style than the Asians who dominate the sport: "We play badminton the same way we play hockey."