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22 Feb 2010
Vancouver 2010 , IOC News

Young contestants win it big

A contest has taken some ten young sports fans from watching the Games on a TV screen to watching them in person in Vancouver.

The McDonald's Champion Kids contest has flown three of its winners from Quebec, Germany and the United Kingdom to spend four days experiencing the Games.

“I'm really, really excited,” said 14-year-old Tom Walsh from the UK. “Seeing these Games and seeing all these athletes, it's just an honour.”

The youngsters walked into the International Olympic Committee's Vancouver office ready to take a stab at their first Olympic encounter: asking IOC President Jacques Rogge any question they wanted.

“It was quite exciting actually,” Walsh said. “A bit different from what you'd normally do,” he joked.

Walsh's mother nominated him, and once he was pre-selected he wrote a summary of the reasons why he should be chosen to go.

“I wrote that I'm allergic to cut-grass and that's why I have a passion for winter sports,” Walsh said. “I can't do any other sports that other kids can do like football and rugby.”

Walsh said if he were to take part in the Youth Olympic Games he would compete as a snowboarder.

“Snowboarding, skiing and ice skating are my main ones, but snowboarding I just love!”

The first game lined up for the winners was the match many Vancouverites would have sacrificed a limb to attend, the Canada-US hockey game.

By Kimiya Shokoohi, YOG reporter.

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