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  • Sochi Launches Olympics Preparations


    Deputy prime minister Alexander Zhukov with Sochi 2014 CEO Dmitry Chernyshenko in Guatemala. (ATR)  
    (ATR) Leaders of the Sochi 2014 bid team say the next steps have already been taken to prepare for the Olympics, now coming in six and a half years.

    “A detailed plan of the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will be ready by August 5,” said bid CEO Dmitry Chernyshenko at a Moscow press conference.

    “In true partnership with the IOC we are 100% focused on the Olympic Games Implementation plan,” Chernyshenko said.

    “This plan will be examined thoroughly by the IOC and it is our promise to provide a 21st century plan, never before seen for an Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

    Talks between the IOC and Sochi on implementing plans for the Games actually began last week, the morning after Sochi won the IOC vote at the Session in Guatemala City.

    IOC Olympic Games executive director Gilbert Felli met with Chernyshenko for breakfast. The two exchanged notes on what each
    The Sochi logo will soon be modified to drop the words "Candidate City".  
    expected to happen next with the Games.

    From Sochi, the IOC will expect to see a quick transition from bid committee to organizing committee. The transition used to take months; now the IOC hopes to see OCOGs form within weeks after a city is selected as an Olympics host.

    There have been no public declarations as to whether Chernyshenko will run the OCOG, but he is believed to have the edge based on his leadership of the bid for the past two years.

    That decision rests with Russian President Vladimir Putin and an array of colleagues in the government who have had a hand in guiding the bid project. They include deputy prime minister Alexander Zhukov, sports minister Vyacheslav Fetisov and economic development minister German Gref.

    The Russian Olympic Committee is also expected to have a say in how the Sochi OCOG is put together.

    Next for the IOC is a visit by President Jacques Rogge, sometime in the next few weeks. It will be his first to Olympic City Sochi. Within a few weeks may come word of a chair for the IOC Coordination Commission, the person who will be the go-between for the IOC with Sochi through the Games. The commission’s full membership could be appointed later in 2007. The first visit of the commission to Sochi may not come until next year.

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