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20OLYMPIC REVIEW IOC President Jacques Rogge has officially invited the National Olympic Committees ( NOCs) of the world to attend the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The ceremony, which took place in front of a live audience at the brand new Richmond Olympic Oval, was broadcast across Canada on television and saw winter sporting great Cindy Klassen add her voice to Rogge's invitation to the youth of the world. Inviting the athletes of the world to Vancouver, Rogge said, " The Olympic Games engender dreams and inspiration in the hearts of young people everywhere. For athletes around the world the chance to compete next year in Vancouver will be their goal, the culmination of a lifetime's ambition. I wish them all good luck, and on behalf of the International Olympic Committee, I invite them to participate in the 21st Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver one year from now." A number of NOCs were invited to Vancouver to receive their invitations directly from President Rogge. The NOCs that were represented by their Presidents in Richmond were Great Britain, Russia, the United States and Canada – the NOCs of the next Games hosts and of the country that neighbours Canada. The other NOCs will receive their invitations by post, which were sent directly from the IOC's headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland. The hour- long spectacular, which culminated in a mass celebration at 6 p. m. Vancouver time – the time at which the Opening Ceremony is exactly 365 days away – saw a number of different cultural elements, including a welcome by the children of the Four Host First Nations, a choir and vocalist singing O Canada, a fun mascot number and a huge finale. There were also elements of sport, with Klassen and some younger athletes all involved in the event. BelowLocal schoolchildren at the celebrations Following the unveiling of its Olympic Torch Relay route last year, the Vancouver 2010 Organising Committee ( VANOC) took advantage of the one- year- to- go mark to unveil its Olympic Torch design, the torchbearer uniform and the first two torchbearers to be selected for the event. IOC President Jacques Rogge was also present, along with a number of other dignitaries at the unveiling event in Whistler – site of the skiing and sliding events for the 2010 Games. Speaking at the event, President Rogge said, " For most people – whether as spectators or torchbearers – the Olympic Torch Relay is a once-in- a- lifetime experience. I have seen the pride people feel when this vibrant symbol of the world's hope and excitement is carried through their own community." He continued, " Many of those who witness the Olympic Torch Relay will find it ignites a passion and inspires them to participate in sport, to give their very best in all they do." Inspired by Canada's open landscape, vast potential and smooth fluid lines left in the snow from winter sports, the torch design is ergonomic and easily handled by everyone. The torch in winter white has a red Maple leaf cut- out and the Games motto " With Glowing Hearts/ Des plus brillants exploits" engraved on it. An inukshuk, the emblem of Vancouver 2010, is also prominent. The torch measures 94.5 centimetres and weighs about 1.6 kilogrammes. The Olympic Torch Relay uniforms for 2010 were designed by renowned Canadian fashion designers Vivienne Lu and Tu Ly. The uniforms are white and accented with bright bursts of blue and green on the left arm of the jacket. The colour palette is inspired by the winter landscape and the multi- hued beauty of the dancing northern lights, as well as the breathtaking scenery of the Sea- to- Sky region. The uniforms also feature the Olympic rings on the back and the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Torch Relay emblem. The first two torchbearers selected through public contests were Patricia Moreno, 17, and Caleb Taylor, 35. Patricia was selected for her leadership role in her community and her dedication to youth sports programmes, while Caleb teaches hockey to inner- city youth in his hometown of Regina. BelowPatricia Moreno with the Olympic Torch VANCOUVER2010: ONEYEARTOGO TORCHDESIGN AND TORCHBEARERS UNIFORMSUNVEILED

Firm Foundations The Olympic Stadium progress in London has heightened with a 30m- long steel section of the roof being lifted into place, taking the height of the venue to almost 37m above the ground level where spectators will enter the Stadium in 2012. A further 27 sections of the roof will be lifted into place over the next nine months with the aim of completing this section of steelwork by October 2009. Olympic Delivery Authority ( ODA) Chairman John Armitt said: " The construction of the roof starts to give a real indication of the height of the structure and people can start to see for themselves how the Olympic Stadium will look during the Games." One year out from the Games in 2010, sporting events such as the World Cups and World Championships are being hosted at the venues in Vancouver and Whistler, providing the opportunity to test Games- time operations as well as to train potential volunteers. Early February saw the inaugural competitions on the sliding track for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games during the Bobsleigh and Skeleton World Cup. The Whistler Sliding Centre confirmed its moniker as the world's fastest track when Latvia's Janis Minins became the first man to drive a four- man bobsleigh faster than 150 kilometres per hour. In front of a sold- out crowd of 3,000, Minins and his team mates won gold on the 1,450 metre course. The Four Continents Figure Skating Championships that took place from 2 to 8 February in the Pacific Coliseum were another good occasion to get an impression of the preparations for next year's Vancouver Olympic Games. The event featured the best figure skaters from non- European countries, and no fewer than 108 athletes from 16 nations competed in front of approximately 30,000 spectators. February also saw more than 300 of the world's best snowboarders meet at Cypress Mountain for the Snowboard FIS World Cup. The Richmond Olympic Oval opened in December – 14 months before the start of the 2010 Games. Built by the City of Richmond, the venue will host the long track speed skating competition on its 400m track. BelowBrent Bommentre and Kimberly Navarro of the United States compete in the Four Continents Figure Skating The British public is being invited to design 50 pence coins to commemorate the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. The competition, being run by the Royal Mint, is open all UK residents over the age of 13. A total of 29 designs will be chosen, depicting each of the sports at the Olympic and Paralympic Games. They will feature on the back of millions of 50 pence pieces from March 2010. The winners will also receive £ 1,000 cash and a gold coin featuring their own design. Two of the 29 sports will be designed by children: the Athletics coin will be chosen from a special children's competition for 6- 12 year olds; a coin for Cycling will be chosen from secondary school entries ( 13- 19 year olds). For a list of permitted sporting themes and the full entry criteria and competition terms and conditions, visit www. royalmintcompetition. co. uk SPORTSEVENTS ASUCCESS COINCOMPETITION IOCVISITS SOCHIAHEAD OFMILESTONE A delegation from the IOC visited Sochi for a working visit with organisers of the 2014 Winter Games. The scheduled Project Review visit on 30 and 31 January 2009 took place just before Sochi 2014 began its ' five-years- to- go' countdown on 7 February 2009. The IOC delegation in Sochi included Jean- Claude Killy, Olympic skiing legend and Chairman of the IOC's Coordination Commission for Sochi 2014, and Gilbert Felli, the IOC's Olympic Games Executive Director. Particular attention was paid to the progress made on the governance structure for the 2014 Winter Games, including collaboration with private investors and contractors. Dmitry Chernyshenko, President and CEO of Sochi 2014, said: " We have been able to update the IOC on the progress we've been making across a full range of areas. Due to the unique nature of our Olympic project, we need to consistently make rapid progress, and this means that every time the IOC visits, we have a lot of good news to share." Jean- Claude Killy, Chairman of the IOC Coordination Commission for Sochi 2014, said: " Since our last visit, the Sochi 2014 project has made good progress and a lot of exciting initiatives are now underway. We had the opportunity to not just meet with Dimitry Chernyshenko and his team but also held very productive discussions with Prime Minister Putin, Deputy Prime Ministers Zhukov and Kozak, and Victor Kolodyazhny of Olympstroy. This once again underlined to us the strong support of the Russian Government and people for the Sochi Olympic Winter Games." BelowMembers of the IOC Coordination Commission in Sochi OLYMPIC REVIEW21 LONDON 2012