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  • Monday Memo -- Stadium Decisions; IOC Inspects Annecy; Three Years To Go


    Future of London Olympic Stadium

    A decision on the future of London Olympic Stadium is expected this week from the Olympic Park Legacy Company.
    At issue with the Olympic Stadium’s future — whether to keep the athletics track following the 2012 Summer Games. (ATR)

    West Ham pledges to retain the stadium structure and athletics track while Premier League rival Tottenham Hotspur plans to knock down the 80,000-capacity venue, build a new purpose-built 60,000-seat football stadium on its site and revitalize the Crystal Palace athletics stadium in south London.

    The OPLC began the process of selecting a post-Games tenant for the stadium last March and planned to announce a winner Jan. 28.

    Instead, the decision was postponed two weeks to allow for more analysis by the OPLC and, in turn, more lobbying by the bids.

    Toronto 2015 Faces Stadium Decision of Its Own

    An altogether separate different decision is coming this week from the leadership of Toronto 2015.

    The organizing committee is expected to announce the location for its oft-delayed centerpiece, long the chief cause of concern for these Pan American Games.
    Check back Tuesday for a Q&A with Toronto 2015 CEO Ian Troop. (ATR)

    The decision comes on the heels of a Feb. 1 deadline by which the municipalities of Brampton and Mississauga submitted plans for 5,000-seat soccer-specific venues to act as contingency plans for a 25,000-capacity complex shared by the city of Hamilton and its Canadian Football League franchise.

    The $160 million Pan Am Stadium proposed by Hamilton would host soccer during the Games and the Tiger-Cats football team after.

    Frequent delays and a funding shortfall forced Toronto 2015 CEO Ian Troop to look elsewhere for bidders, and now his leadership team must decide between a smaller soccer legacy and a larger – but much costlier – football legacy.

    Until the decision is made public, Troop is under a gag order with regard to the stadium, but he still took time to speak with Around the Rings about Games funding, Olympic qualifiers and, yes, maybe a little about the stadium.

    Check back Tuesday for the complete interview.

    IOC Evaluation Commission Visits Annecy

    Around the Rings will be on the scene in Annecy this week for the IOC Evaluation Commission's visit to the French bid city.

    Annecy 2018 will have both its new leadership team headed by CEO Charles Beigbeder and its new communications crew led by Caroline Duboc on full display. 

    The inspection team chaired by Swedish IOC member Gunilla Lindberg will arrive Wednesday and depart Sunday.

    Expect daily coverage from ATR Editor Ed Hula and European correspondent Mark Bisson.

    Alpine Skiing World Champs

    Munich 2018 will have its ski site on display this week and next at the alpine world championships.

    Around the Rings will be on the scene in Garmisch-Partenkirchen for the competition that kicks off Tuesday and runs through Feb. 20

    The International Ski Federation will try to prove its team event is worthy of a spot at Sochi 2014.

    It’s after this winter sports season that IOC president Jacques Rogge will decide which events to add to the Olympic program.

    Three Years to Sochi
    Sochi 2014 received more than 24,000 mascot submissions. (Sochi 2014)

    Sochi will unveil its mascot shortlist for the 2014 Olympics on Monday—the three year to go mark for the Games.

    Among the shortlisted Olympic mascots are a polar bear, snow leopard and Father Frost.

    They will be presented to the public on Russian national TV on Feb. 7, via short videos about each mascot.

    A live TV show will follow when the Russian public will get to vote for their favorite mascot; it will be unveiled later in February.

    Vancouver Anniversary
    Vancouver’s Olympic cauldron will be re-lit on Saturday. (Getty Images)

    Saturday is the one year anniversary of the Olympics.

    A full slate of celebrations are scheduled, including the re-lighting of the cauldron at Jack Poole Plaza.

    Around the Rings will be on the scene for the festivities.

    The Vancouver Canucks will play the Calgary Flames on Saturday and part of the game’s festivities includes an Olympic tribute.

    “Patriot Hearts”, VANOC CEO John Furlong’s memoir will also be published on Feb. 12.

    Turin Anniversary

    Thursday is the fifth anniversary of the Turin Olympics.

    The Italian city staged the XX Winter Olympic Games from Feb. 10 – 26.

    Speed Skating World Championships

    Speed skating returns to the Olympic Oval in Calgary.

    The venue for the 1988 Winter Olympic speed skating tournament plays host to the 2011 International Skating Union All Round Speed Skating Championships.

    Scheduled for Feb. 12 and 13, nearly 50 skaters will compete in eight events.

    European Youth Olympic Festival

    The 10th edition of the European Youth Winter Olympic Festival begins Saturday.
    Rampich the Icicle is the mascot of the EYOWF. (Liberec 2011)

    Liberec, Czech Republic is the site of the EYWOF.

    Eight sports will be contested during the Festival, which is organized for athletes aged 14 to 18.

    Competition runs until the 19th.

    One notable feature of the EYOWF—when the Festival’s flame reached the Czech Republic, it was the first time the Olympic Flame traveled through the Czech Republic.

    The European Youth Olympic Festival was founded by Jacques Rogge when he was president of the European Olympic Committees.

    Written by Matthew Grayson and Ed Hula III.

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