The SportingJournal

Innsbruck Calling

Only a day stands between the opening ceremony of the first ever Youth Winter Olympic games in Innsbruck, Austria. Over one thousand of the best winter sports athletes, aged from 14 to 18, will compete at the inaugural competition in 15 different snow events. Five years after approving the idea of a Youth Winter Olympics, finally that dream has become a reality. Not only will the Youth Winter Games showcase for the best international young talent, but has also been designed to have a number of educational and fun experiences for the athletes to participate in. These educational & cultural programs range from teaching the young athletes from how they present themselves to the media to a music festival.

“From January 13 to 22, you will not only see the next generation of international winter sports stars, but you will also experience some great innovations and new formats that have never before featured in an Olympic sports programme”. IOC President, Jacques Rogge said to reporters.

The Youth Winter Olympics are designed to promote the Olympic values, excellence, respect & friendship as well as inspiring people from all around the world to get into sport.

“The world’s most talented young athletes will compete in the same disciplines as at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, with the addition of exciting new sports such as women’s ski jumping, ski halfpipe and snowboard slopestyle.”

Innsbruck was chosen out of four applicants to host the games with a landslide margin 85 – 15 over the other short-listed city, Kuopio. Innsbruck with a population of 120,000, is well known for it’s great skiing and snow sport environment. The Youth Winter Olympics will be the 3rd Olympic event in the city, also playing host for the 1964 and 1976 Winter Games.

The Youth Winter Olympic will be held in the same year as the summer Olympiad, which will be held in London, from late July to mid-August later this year. The games organisers are pleased with all the excitement and attention that the games are getting in Innsbruck, selling over 80% of tickets with only 2 days to go. It is expected that the Youth Winter Olympic Games will become a breeding ground for the next Winter Olympic Champions.

Jacob Arnott

Photo: Innsbruck 2012 & Logo Editorial use

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