American Alpine skier Lindsey Vonn hasbeen unveiled as the first everAmbassador for the inaugural WinterYouth Olympic Games, to be held inInnsbruck, Austria, from 13 to 22 January,2012. In her position as an Ambassador,Vonn aims to inspire the young athletesgoing to Innsbruck, who in addition tocompeting in their sport events willparticipate in an exciting Culture andEducation Programme (CEP). 2010 Olympic Downhill gold medallistVonn will follow in the footsteps of UsainBolt, Yelena Isinbaeva and Michael Phelpswho were all Ambassadors for the firstedition of the Summer Youth OlympicGames in Singapore last year."I have been skiing since I was twoyearsold," 26-year-old Vonn explained. "So I know the importance of strong rolemodels. When I first met my hero, PicaboStreet, it was a huge thrill and an unforg-ettable moment for me. She inspired me tobecome what I am today. If I can have evenhalf that effect on some of the youngathletes I come into contact with, it will beworth it. I'm really looking forward to it."IOC President Jacques Rogge said: "Itis a terrific thing to have such an iconic andsuccessful winter athlete -not to mentiona three-time Olympian -on board tomentor the athletes at the 2012 WinterYouth Olympic Games and encourage kidsaround the world to take up sport."Keep up to date with the latest YOG newsat www.facebook.com/youtholympicgamesAbove leftLindsey Vonn proudly displaysher gold medal from VancouverLINDSEYVONN:YOG AMBASSADORFORINNSBRUCK YOG AT THE WORLDCONFERENCE ONSPORT AND THEENVIRONMENTYoung representatives of the first Youth OlympicGames in Singapore in 2010 addressed aprestigious audience including heads of state,Olympic champions, IOC members and industryexperts at the 9th World Conference on Sport andthe Environment held in Doha, Qatar in May. The delegation included three YOG YoungReporters, a Young Ambassador as well as a YOGathlete, the show jumper Dalma Rushdi H Malhas,who became the first Saudi Arabian woman tocompete in an Olympic event taking bronze in theindividual discipline. Theyoung representativeswere invited to speak about the role sport can playin providing a greener future for their generation at a session entitled 'Tomorrow's Leaders Today'. Young Reporter Sonali Prasad from Indiaobserved: "Just like sport which unites people allover the world, let this cause (the environment)bring us all together as one. Why? Because weneed clean air and fresh water to live. We all need a brighter future."Australian Young Reporter LukeDufficy added: "Sport itself cannot save the planet.But it can lead the way by making people awareabout the problems and what they can do about it." The Young Reporters were also asked to writeabout the event for www.olympic.org/yog and IOCsocial media channels. They were also given theopportunity to interview IOC President JacquesRogge about sport and the environment, a key topicof the YOG's Culture and Education programme.BelowLuke Dufficy and Sonali Prasad interviewIOC President Jacques Rogge in DohaOLYMPIC REVIEW15YOGMEDALDESIGNCOMPETITIONFollowing the success of the medal designcompetition for the Singapore 2010Summer Youth Olympic Games, the IOConce again offered fans a chance to makeOlympic history by designing the medalfor the first edition of the Winter YouthOlympic Games.Designs were submitted by peoplefrom around the world and when theapplication process closed in April thecompetition was opened up to a publicvote. Fans can continue to vote up until June 30 and the 10 most populardesigns will then go to an IOC jury. The final winner will be announced inSeptember.Gian-Franco Kasper, Chairman of theCoordination Commission for Innsbruck2012, said, "We were really excited tolaunch this new competition. We alwayslook forward to engaging with fans and are very happy to discover the creativityand imagination of young people acrossthe world."The winning designer will win a trip to the Innsbruck 2012 Winter YouthOlympic Games and a replica of their gold medal design. Keep an eye onwww.medaldesigncompetition.com to seethe 10 most popular designs.
16OLYMPIC REVIEWA photographicexhibition entitled Roadto 2012: Changing Pacewill take place from 25July to 25 September atLondon's NationalPortrait Gallery, as partof the London 2012Cultural Olympiad.Among the photographson display will beportraits of taekwondoworld number one AaronCook, Paralympicswimmer EleanorSimmonds and LOCOGDirector of ParalympicIntegration ChrisHolmes. For further details visitwww.london2012.comAt the launch ceremonyfor the Sochi 2014 CoinProgramme, two-timeworld figure skatingchampion IrinaSlutskaya joined theteam of ambassadorsfor the 2014 Olympicand Paralympic WinterGames. Sochi 2014President and CEODmitry Chernyshenkoexplained: "Irina hasbeen with us since thebeginning of the Sochi2014 project, rightback at the biddingstage. She is one of themost outstandingathletes in modernfigure skating and afavourite among theRussian public." The Organising Committee of theLondon 2012 Olympic Games andParalympic Games is confidently lookingahead to hosting a string of sporting events nowthat the final touches are being put on a numberof Olympic venues throughout the city, the IOCCoordination Commission reported after making its eighth visit to London in April. The CoordinationCommission got a first-hand look at some of thevenues that are nearing construction completion,including the Olympic Stadium and the firstresidential block of the Athletes' Village, as well as some that are already open for events,including the 6,000-seat Velodrome."The venues look fantastic, thanks in large partto the vision and planning of London 2012," saidCoordination Commission Chairman Denis Oswald."We're very pleased with the progress, and we can see that the athletes are really at the heart ofthese Games. Now it's time to focus on the detailsand the testing phase, which is no easy process.But if they continue to follow the path they arecurrently on, we have absolutely no doubt they willdeliver a top-quality Games and a great legacy."London will play host to 42 sports eventsbetween now and the start of the Games on 27 July 2012, which will give organisers ampleopportunity to test a maximum number of logisticaland operational elements.London 2012 Chairman Seb Coe said: "Theathlete in me knows that you never want to facesomething at the Games that you haven'tencountered thousands of times before in training or previous competition - this principle is guidingour preparations. I have always believed if you focuson the athletes, who are at the heart of our Games,then we will get it right for all the other groups."The Coordination Commission's ninth andpenultimate visit to London is scheduled for 5-7October 2011.Meanwhile, Coe and IOC Athletes'Commission Chairman Frank Fredericks laid thefinal piece of turf on the Olympic stadium field ofplay, marking the completion of construction. AboveSebastian Coe and Frank Fredericks laythe final piece of turf at the Olympic stadiumLONDON2012WELLPREPAREDFORTESTINGTIMESAHEADSOCHIMOVESINTOGAMESDELIVERYPHASEThe IOC Coordination Commission,led by Chairman Jean-Claude Killy,paid its fifth visit to Sochi, Russia in March andconfirmed that preparations for the Sochi 2014Olympic Winter Games are moving quickly into theGames-delivery phase. Sochi organisers are nowfully focused on bringing the Games operations tolife after the successful conclusion of the firstsports events -international Alpine skiingcompetitions -in February."Once again, we've seen great progress duringour visit to Sochi. I was privileged to be able toattend the very impressive first test event held herein February. It allowed the Games organisers tolearn many lessons for the future, and we can seethese already being integrated into their planning."said Killy. "On the construction front, the initialvision for the transformation of the region is startingto materialise, with infrastructure and venues rapidlyrising from the ground. Sochi 2014 is starting tobring its Games vision to life, and is delivering on the legacy of improving the living conditions in the region through bringing infrastructural andenvironmental improvements."During the visit, the Commission was able to seefirst-hand the advances being made on the sites of the Alpine skiing slopes and the sliding track. The Commission identified four priorities that theorganisers must continue to focus on over thecoming weeks and months:?Identifying, recruiting and training the workforcefor the Games will require a nationwide effort, andproviding accommodation for that workforce andvisitors to the Games remains a top priority.?A relocation plan was presented to theCommission, outlining the large numbers of peoplewho will be moving from Moscow to Sochi. This isan important and symbolic step, making the Gameseven more of a reality for the local population.?Olympic-related transport infrastructure will be ofthe highest quality, but the planning to ensure a top-level client experience within the transportsystem is crucial to the success of the Games.?Finally, the great ambition of the local authoritiesto create a year-round centre for tourism isbecoming a reality. It is the entire hospitality industrythat must be mobilised.NEWS INBRIEF