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  • Monday Memo -- 100 Years for Japanese Olympics; Early Test for Rio


    Japanese athletes first competed in the Olympics at the Stockholm Summer Games in 1912, a year after the JOC was founded. (JOC)
    Japanese NOC Celebrates Centennial

    The Japanese Olympic Committee has no plans to slow down this week in observance of its centennial.

    Instead, the Olympic Council of Asia is coming to Tokyo for three days of meetings and another two of celebrations as the JOC turns 100 years old.

    Standing committees will convene Tuesday followed by the OCA’s executive board on Wednesday and its 30th general assembly on Thursday.

    An anniversary symposium titled “Sport in the 21st Century and the Challenge to Global Issues” kicks off the JOC’s festivities on Friday.

    A day later, Emperor Akihito will stop by the Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa to officially mark a century since the JOC was established July 16, 1911 by judo founder Jigoro Kano, the first IOC member from Asia.

    The JOC is also expected to use the occasion as a chance to shed some light upon whether Tokyo will bid for the 2020 Olympics following the March 11 earthquake – and PyeongChang winning the 2018 Winter Games on Wednesday.

    Around the Rings will be on the scene in Japan for the week’s proceedings, as will IOC president Jacques Rogge.

    A JOC official tells ATR that Rogge will arrive Wednesday, attend the OCA assembly on Thursday, present to the symposium on Friday and stop by the ceremony on Saturday.

    25 Years for Visa, IOC

    Visa’s head of global marketing Kevin Burke tells Around the Rings his company’s Olympic sponsorship isn’t about being “the only card accepted” at the Games for 25 years and counting.

    Monday is the 25th anniversary of the credit giant joining The Olympic Partner program as its exclusive payment card and official payment system.

    Check back later for Burke’s take on London 2012 ticketing glitches, PyeongChang’s 2018 hosting rights and how sponsorship of the Games can help build a brand as big as Visa.

    Early “Test Event” for Rio 2016

    Rio de Janeiro’s route for the Olympic marathon will soon get an early test of sorts.
    This map shows the marathon route in relation to some of Rio’s most famous landmarks.

    Participants in the annual Rio Marathon will run the same 26.1-mile course through which Olympians will travel come 2016, including a stretch adjacent to the iconic Copacabana Beach.

    Around the Rings will be on the scene in Rio for Sunday’s “test event” but will also report on Games preparations.

    Aquatics World Champs

    FINA will dive head-first into its 14th world championships beginning Saturday in Shanghai.

    Synchronized swimming and diving fill the opening day of competition with water polo kicking off Sunday.

    No one will actually race until next week. Open-water events begin July 19 and swimming on July 24.

    Competition runs until month’s end at the Shanghai Aquatic Sports Center, where a total of 66 gold medals will be up for grabs throughout the world champs.

    Written by Matthew Grayson.

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