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Olympic Highlights

06 Jul 2015
Olympic News



© IOC / Christophe Moratal

IOC President Thomas Bach welcomed His Majesty the King Willem-Alexander of the Netherlands to the IOC headquarters and The Olympic Museum in Lausanne. President Bach informed the King about Olympic Agenda 2020, and the important role played by sport in society. The King, an IOC Member from 1998 to 2013 and current IOC Honorary Member, signed the IOC’s Golden Book of Honour before visiting The Olympic Museum with the IOC President.  His Majesty the King Willem-Alexander was accompanied by IOC Member in the Netherlands Camiel Eurlings and IOC Honorary Member Hein Verbruggen.


The IOC President was received by the President of the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB), Ary S. Graça F°, at the FIVB headquarters in Lausanne. The two men talked about the preparations for the Olympic Games Rio de Janeiro 2016 and the development of volleyball around the world.

© IOC / Christophe Moratal

With the President of the Alliance of Independent Members of SportAccord (AIMS), Stephan Fox, President Bach talked about the restructuring of SportAccord and Olympic Agenda 2020.

© IOC / Christophe Moratal

The President of Right to Play, Olympian Johann Olav Koss, visited the IOC President. Their discussions mainly concerned the place of sport in society and the important role that Olympians have to play in implementing the Olympic Agenda 2020 recommendations.

© IOC / Bertrand Rey

President Bach has met Chunsa Byun, Olympic 3,000m short track speed skating champion with the Korean team at the Olympic Winter Games Turin 2006. Among other topics, they talked about the forthcoming Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang in 2018.

President Bach has also hosted IOC Executive Board Member Ching-Kuo Wu and IOC Member Mario Pescante, with whom he discussed Olympic Agenda 2020 and the Olympic Games Rio de Janeiro 2016.


© Aïcha Garad Ali

Aïcha Garad Ali has been supervising a humanitarian project for Yemeni refugees in Djibouti. This action, launched by the First Lady of Djibouti, is helping thousands of people, 80 per cent of whom are women and children, by providing basic products such as milk, nappies, mattresses and clothing.


© Tokyo 2020

The IOC Coordination Commission for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 completed its second official visit to the Japanese capital this week, citing the Organising Committee’s adherence to key milestones, strong government support and its embrace of Olympic Agenda 2020 as highlights of the visit. Led by Commission Chair John Coates, the Commission noted the excellent work done by the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee in implementing Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms into its venue master plan and other aspects of preparations. By making greater use of existing facilities (including those from the Olympic Games Tokyo 1964) and working to ensure that new venues deliver on the needs for the Games and the subsequent legacy, the application of Olympic Agenda 2020 for Tokyo 2020 has already resulted in approximately USD 1.7 billion in savings from the revised construction budget. Read the full press release here.

On 30 June, the IOC released the report by the Evaluation Commission for the Winter Youth Olympic Games 2020 (YOG), whose Chair is IOC Member Yang Yang. This is the first such report since the approval of Olympic Agenda 2020. It highlights not only the opportunities and challenges of both projects, but also how Olympic Agenda 2020 recommendations have been reflected in the candidature files. The host city for the 3rd Winter YOG in 2020 will be elected at the 128th IOC Session in Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) on 31 July 2015, following a final presentation by Brasov and Lausanne to the full IOC membership.  Read the full press release here.

The 2014 edition of the Olympic Solidarity Annual Report is now available on It contains the most important results of Olympic Solidarity Programmes, as well as details of the various actions undertaken to benefit the NOCs in 2014.



The International Rowing Federation (FISA) has announced that rowers from 45 nations are set to contest the third and final stage of the 2015 World Rowing Cup series in Lucerne (Switzerland) from 10 to 12 July. This is the highest number of national federations participating in World Cup regattas this season. Details on

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF)’s 2nd World Youth Coaches Conference will be held in Cali (Colombia) on 20 July, giving the opportunity for coaches from approximately 150 national teams assembled for the IAAF World Youth Championships, Cali 2015, the chance to attend. IAAF President and IOC Honorary Member Lamine Diack will open the Conference, in which six international experts will also be taking part. Details on

On 1 July, the International Boxing Association (AIBA) unveiled the official logo for the Junior World Boxing Championships 2015, which will be held from 4 to 12 September 2015 in St Petersburg (Russian Federation). The logo features a tiger, which symbolises youth, energy and vivacity, while the bridges in the background symbolise the traditional drawbridges of St Petersburg across the Neva River. Junior boxers aged 15 and 16 will be eligible to compete in the 13 weight categories.
In addition, 27 June marked 100 days to go before the Doha 2015 World Boxing Championships in Qatar. Between 5 and 18 October 2015, 260 boxers will take part in these Championships, which will also provide Olympic qualification quotas for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Details on

On 24 June, the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) unveiled its new brand identity to help modernise the image of the organisation. A new logo is central to the update (see above). The distinctive rainbow stripes – which are synonymous with the UCI World Champions – are a prominent feature of the new logo, reflecting the heritage of the UCI and its World Championship events. This is only the second time in 115 years that the UCI has refreshed its logo. Details on

Judo demonstration at the university in Port Moresby. © IJF

The fourth edition of the International Judo Federation (IJF)’s Judo Educational Journey has been travelling through Oceania. Organised jointly by the IJF, the Oceania Judo Union and IJF President Marius Vizer, the Journey has taken in four countries and territories (Australia, Papua-New Guinea, Vanuatu and New Caledonia). Led by IJF Media and Judo for Peace Director Nicolas Messner, the Journey was launched in Wollongong (Australia) on the occasion of the National Championships. In Port Moresby in Papua New Guinea, judo demonstrations were held at the university, high schools and a local club.  In Vanuatu, which was devastated by a cyclone in March this year, the IJF will soon be sending equipment to help the national federation. Three judo sessions were held for judokas aged between 3 and 30 in the capital, Port-Vila. The final stage of the Journey was New Caledonia (France), with visits, meetings and demonstrations. Details on

The International Swimming Federation (FINA) has announced that the potential candidates to host the FINA World Championships in 2021 and the FINA World Masters Championships in 2023 attended an information meeting on 30 June in Lausanne. The cities and national federations of Abu Dhabi/Dubai (United Arab Emirates), Buenos Aires (Argentina), Doha (Qatar), Fukuoka/Tokyo (Japan), Istanbul (Turkey) and Nanjing/Wuhan (People’s Republic of China) were briefed on the benefit, economic impact and legacy generated with the organisation of these Championships. Representatives of the organisers of the forthcoming 2015 editions in Kazan (Russian Federation) were also present. The next step is for the candidates to submit an executed Host City Agreement to FINA by 26 October 2015, after which each of the bids will make a formal presentation to the FINA Bureau on 8 November in Dubai. The Bureau will then announce the names of the winners. Details on

From 29 June to 5 July, the OLYMPIAPARK in Berlin (Germany) is hosting the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM) Senior World Championships, with more than 220 athletes from 34 countries taking part. Six qualification berths at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games are on offer to the three highest finishers in each of the Men's and Women's Individual events. Details on

The women’s 10m air pistol event. © Nicolò Zangirolami

Held from 25 June to 2 July, the first International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) Junior Cup of the year saw 572 young athletes from 44 nations engaged in rifle, pistol, shotgun, trap, skeet and mixed events in Suhl (Germany). The Junior Cup, which debuted last year in the same location, allows athletes up to 20 years of age to compete in dedicated events, including both Olympic and Youth Olympic events. The Junior Cup will be back in two months, when a Junior Shotgun Cup takes place from 21 to 30 August in Almaty (Kazakhstan). Details on

The International Triathlon Union (ITU) has been running the Triathlon Family Nepalese Earthquake Emergency Fundraising Campaign. This solidarity campaign was to raise emergency funds for the people of Nepal for immediate needs such as food, water, shelter and medical supplies.  The USD 10,520 dollars raised during the one-month campaign will now be sent to the Nepal Triathlon Association. Details on


The International Sailing Federation (ISAF) has appointed Peter Sowrey (photo) as its new CEO. Sowrey will be helping to shape the vision and direction of the organisation, working in conjunction with the President, Carlo Croce, and the Executive Board. Details on


The International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) has announced that the “largest beach volleyball tournament” record was broken on the beaches of Scheveningen near The Hague (Netherlands) on 27 June. A total of 2,355 players took part simultaneously, beating the previous record of 1,610 set in Canada in 2014. Those present included numerous personalities, not least FIVB President Ary S. Graça F°. The tournament was played on 276 courts spread out over 1 kilometre of beach in Scheveningen. The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Championships are taking place in the Netherlands from 26 June to 5 July, with 48 men’s teams and 48 women’s teams taking part. Details on


© The Gambia NOC

The four Gambian athletes who won medals at the 2nd African Youth Games presented their medals to The Gambia NOC on 26 June (see photo above). Edrissa Marong (800m), Sengan Jobe (200m) and their 4x100 relay team mates, Momodou Sey and Suleyman Manneh, all won bronze medals at these Games held in Mauritius in April this year. The ceremony took place at Olympic House in the presence of NOC First Vice-President and IOC Member Beatrice Allen, the President of the Gambia Athletics Association, Dodou Capi Joof, and head coach Mariama Sallah. Details on

© Guatemalan NOC

The 27th edition of the Olympic Day Run brought together over 5,000 Guatemalans, men, women, children and persons with disabilities (see photo above), in the “Ciudad de los Deportes”. The participants could choose between courses of 4, 8 and 12km. Representatives of the Guatemalan NOC, the Autonomous Sports Confederation and other sports organisations also took part in the celebrations on 28 June. Details on

© NOC of the Federated States of Micronesia

For the 17th consecutive year, the NOC of the Federated States of Micronesia organised a 5km run and a basketball tournament for young people (see photo above), in which more than 800 people took part. Two Olympians, swimmer Debra Daniel and weightlifter Manuel Miningfel, were present, giving the participants a chance to meet their Olympic heroes. This year, once again, the Olympic Day celebrations were a great success. Details on

© Nepalese Olympic Committee

After the devastating earthquake in Nepal last April, the Nepalese Olympic Committee celebrated Olympic Day with a 10-day programme. A cycle rally attracted over 1,200 participants, while a multitude of sports competitions and tournaments brought together thousands of locals to play chess, run, kick, bat or throw a ball (see photo above). For the NOC, this was an opportunity to engage with the region's young people and momentarily help them forget the trauma of last April's earthquake. Details on

© Peruvian NOC

In Peru, the 28th edition of the Olympic Day Run attracted the largest-ever number of participants. Organised by the Peruvian NOC, with the support of TOP Partner Samsung Electronics, the Run saw hundreds of people take part (see photo above), including Peruvian sports heroes such as swimmer Rosairo “Choco” de Vivanco (who read out  the message from the IOC President) and athlete Edith Noeding. Several personalities were present for the formal ceremony, including NOC President Jose Quiñones González, Samsung Marketing Director Alberto Días and the Korean Ambassador to Peru, Keun Ho Jang. Details on

© Portuguese NOC

The Portuguese NOC organised several events to celebrate Olympic Day 2015. The first of these was held on 31 May and 1 June in Santarem (see photo above), and attracted several hundred participants. People of all ages tried out various sports, thanks to the demonstrations organised by the national sports federations. They could also visit an Olympic exhibition featuring objects and films linked to the history of the Olympic Movement in Portugal. Accompanying them were Olympic marathon champion Rosa Mota (Seoul 1988) and bronze medal-winning judoka Nuno Delgado (Sydney 2000), who were ambassadors for the event. Celebrations were also held in Almada and Alvito. In Almada, near Lisbon, over 1,000 people took part in an Olympic Walk on 7 June, while children had the chance to practise different sports on 3 June in Alvito. Details on

© NOC of Sao Tomé and Príncipe

Around 2,000 people celebrated Olympic Day in Trindade, capital of the district of Mé-Zóchi.  The NOC of Sao Tomé and Príncipe organised the traditional run, together with demonstrations of sports including taekwondo (see photo above), in which many children took part. Various local authority representatives were present, including a city councillor, the Director of Sport and national federation presidents. Details on

On 1 August 2015, Gallipoli Anzac Cove will host an international swimming event to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Gallipoli. This is an initiative of the Turkish NOC in collaboration with the Governorship and Municipality of Çanakkale. In this “Peace and Friendship” event, swimmers will lay 100 peace wreaths on the Aegean Sea to honour those fallen during the battle before swimming 1,915 metres from a ship at sea to the shores of the Anzac Cove. There will be no race or ranking of the swimmers. Instead, the participants will swim side-by-side before being awarded with a special “Memorial Medal”. The NOC has invited several NOCs to send participants, including those of Australia, Great Britain and New Zealand, whose forces landed in the bay in 1915. Details on

© Venezuelan NOC

The Venezuelan NOC, in cooperation with the Ministry for Youth and Sport, celebrated Olympic Day on 27 June at the “Paseo Los Próceres” in Caracas (see photo above), with various leisure, cultural and sports activities on the programme. The Minister for Youth and Sport, Pedro Infante, and NOC President Eduardo Álvarez also took part alongside children of various ages. Each of them could try out various sports, such as indoor football, roller hockey, figure skating, athletics and even virtual canoeing.




On 2 July, the PyeongChang Organising Committee for the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (POCOG) announced that Song Seung-whan (photo) has been selected as Executive Creative Director for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. Song, who started his career as a television and theatre actor, is most widely known for creating the musical show Nanta (also known as Cookin’ or Cookin’ Nanta). The non-verbal performance, which mixes comedy, music, cooking and traditional Korean samul nori rhythm, debuted in Seoul in 1997 and has gone on to become the country’s longest-running show, attracting more than 10 million theatregoers since its premiere. Nanta made its international debut at the 1999 Edinburgh Festival Fringe, where it received an award for best performance, before becoming the first Asian musical to be performed on Broadway in New York in 2004. The PyeongChang 2018 Opening Ceremony will take place on 9 February 2018, while the Closing Ceremony will be held on 25 February, with both events being staged at the PyeongChang Olympic Stadium.  Details on





From Argentina to Vietnam, entries for the IOC’s competition to design the medals for the 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games (YOG) in Lillehammer poured in, making it the most hotly contested Medal Design Competition to date. The designs submitted pushed creativity and imagination to the limit, and the panel of judges comprising Olympians, Young Ambassadors and Young Reporters had to choose a winning design from among over 300 entries. The one chosen is by 20-year-old Romanian Burzo Ciprian, with his medal (see photo above) “To the top”. Read the full press release here.


The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has published its latest four-year Strategic Plan (2015–2018), which aims to consolidate the growth of the Paralympic Games, increase global participation in para-sport and improve the recognition and value of the Paralympic brand. The document can be downloaded here. Details on

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