10 Interesting Facts About The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics
The Winter Olympics in Sochi are finally here! After much preparation and planning, the Winter Olympics are due to take place with a range of fabulous athletes ready to compete in their bid for a medal. There are a 15 types of sports taking place in 89 events including ice skating (my favourite!), skiing, ice hockey and more.
In this article, you will find 11 interesting facts about the Winter Olympics covering everything from cost, numbers, facts and more.
1. The 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics will cost $51 billion, in what appears to be the most expensive Winter Olympic Games yet. The cost will cover the many venues and opening ceremony. This price beats any other Olympic Games even the Beijing Summer Olympic Games and in London 2012.
2. The Sochi Olympic torch will have travelled over 65,000 kilometres in 123 days by 14,000 carriers. This long trip has started in October 7, 2013 last year and will make its debut during the fantastic Opening Ceremony. This torch has been to some of the most amazing place on earth (and space) including:
- Europe's highest mountain: Mount Elbrus
- Outer Space: The torch has been blasted into Outer Space by the Soyuz Rocket.
- Siberia's Lake Baikal: It has also been under water in Lake Baikal in SIberia.
- North Pole: The torches also entered the North Pole thanks to a nuclear icebreaker.
The torch weighs 1.8 kg and is less than a metre tall. I'm looking forward to seeing it during the Opening Ceremony!
3. The Sochi Winter Olympics have 3 mascots:
- the Polar Bear
- the European Hare
- the Amur Leopard
These mascots were decided on by the public during a live television show. The top three mascots that got the most votes were taken into account and here they are!
4. The number of countries entering the competition this year come to 88 countries with each country entering at least one athlete. Here are some countries with the most amount of entries and their number of athletes.
- France: 105 athletes
- Finland: 103
- USA: 230
- Switzerland: 168
- South Korea: 70
- Russia: 225
- Germany: 152
5. Sochi has a population of 400,000 people approximately. You may imagine Sochi to have a cold climate with plenty of snow but it is actually the exact opposite! Sochi is the "sunny" destination for most Russians and its temperature never really goes under 12 degrees Celsius. In Summer, this city has palm trees, beaches and warm coastlines. Its average temperature is 18 - 50 degrees Celsius during day time.You can see the logic in this, as it is at the same latitude as Nice in France. I know Nice to be a very warm city so Sochi must be similar. It is the cold winds that sometimes blow over Sochi which make its temperature to go down. It will be the warmest city in history to host the Winter Olympic Games.
Over 2 million tourists visit Sochi each year.
6. There will be 7 new sports this year which are:
- Figure Skating Team Event: There won't just be your usual pair of figure skaters. In this event, there will be a whole team of figure skaters gliding on the ice together.
- Women's Ski Jumping
- Team relay luge
- Ski Slope Style
- Snowboard Slope Style
- Ski half-pipe
- Mixed relay biathlon
7. The medals are what everyone is talking about. They have a stylish and beautiful design which clearly shows the amount of work put into the medals. I have to say, from all the medals I have seen up until now, my favourite medals are these ones. There is something mystical about the shapes on the medal that make them truly spectacular. The Olympic gold medal contains 525 grams of silver with a 960 hallmark and 6 grams of gold and a 999 hallmark.
8. This is the first time that Russia have hosted the Winter Olympics but they have hosted the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. The Winter Paralympics will also be held in Sochi. 1650 athletes from 45 countries are expected to compete in the Paralympics this year.
9. How many people will view the Sochi Winter Olympics? Russia's primary news channel have predicted an estimated 3.5 billion people to tune in to the Winter Olympics. That is half of the total global population.
Approximately 2 billion people have viewed Kate Middleton's and Prince William's wedding so this will be 1.5 billion more. So, for every 7 people you see on the street, at least 4 of them will have watched at least some part of the Winter Olympics. Now that's something!
10. The Opening Ceremony will kick off on the 7th of February, this coming Friday and officials will not reveal any of the many events during the Ceremony. However, there have been some rumours and for a fact, some great Russian musicians will be making their debut during the show. Viola player Yuri Bashmet and conductor Valery Gergiev will be appearing on the show, sources say. However, everything else has been kept secret. I can bet that the Opening Ceremony is going to be spectacular, the Russian people always have a certain finesse and style and that will be evident in the Ceremony. I am sure that the coming Ceremony is going to be a show we will never forget. Get your snacks and family gathered round to your house and enjoy the show!
11. So, what sports are there to look forward to this year? Whatever your tastes, there are sure to be a sport that you will enjoy watching. Check out the table before for all the sports available to watch this year.
Also known as "downhill skiing". Athletes will have to ski down snow mountains.
Racing down snow mountains against their opponents
My favourite! The contestants have to perform a dance with music and beautiful costumes. Men, women or men and women participate in this event.
Going on a bobsled track with a bobsleigh. A very action packed and thrilling event to watch!
Athelets have to slide stones across ice and try to make them land in the given targets.
Speed skating is where competitors have to speed skate on ice in an area and are timed.
A typical match of hockey only on ice!
Where one person sleds down a snow track and are timed.
Skiiers have to compete in both cross-country skiing and ski jumping. Another interesting sport!
The athlete has to sled down an ice track facing down.
Going down a snow slope whilst doing stunts. A highly entertaining and skilful sport.
Short track speed skating
Multiple skaters have to speed skate over an ice track
Its time to get everyone in the spirit of the Games. Please share this article and get everyone in the mood!
© 2014 Susan W