The opening session of the IOC Coordination Commission for Beijing 2022. (Getty Images)
(ATR) The IOC team keeping an eye on preparations for the 2022 Winter Olympics begins its first visit.
The 18 member panel of IOC members and sports experts arrived in the Chinese capital over the weekend. The commission will meet for three days, with Tuesday set aside for a trip to the ski areas north of Beijing.
The chairman of the commission is Russian Olympic Committee president and IOC member Alexander Zhukov.
Other IOC members include: International Ice Hockey Federation president Rene Fasel, bobsleigh federation Ivo Ferriani, Hong Kong IOC member Timothy Fok, International Ski Federation president Gian-Franco Kasper, Romania NOC president Octavian Morariu, IOC Athletes Commission chair Angela Ruggiero, IOC vp Juan Antonio Samaranch and C.K. Wu, IOC member in Chinese Taipei and international boxing federation president.
Leading the organizing committee is Guo Jinlong, a politburo member of the Communist Party of China and a former mayor of Beijing.
Alexander Zhukov chairs the IOC commission for Beijing 2022. (Getty Images)
Beijing was selected last year as the 2022 host over Almaty, Kazakhstan. The two cities were the only remaining candidates from a field that at one time numbered six cities. Failure to win public or government support led to the demise of the other bids, including Oslo, which was considered to have a lock on the 2022 race.
Beijing will become the only city to host both summer and winter Games. Venues built for 2008 will be used for some of the ice events, while construction is supposed to begin this month on the national speedskating arena.
The venues for the ski events are located north of Beijing, a journey ranging from an hour to two hours. The mountain venues will depend on manufactured snow as the region is arid, making snowfalls slight.
Written by Ed Hula.
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