POSTED: February 12th 2009

Rogge starts 2010 countdown

SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT / Sports Features Communications

VANCOUVER: Jacques Rogge marked the start of the one-year countdown to the Winter Olympics in Vancouver by predicting success in terms of both the organisational efforts and, of course, for the participants.

The president of the International Olympic Committee was in Whistler for a string of formal events to recognise that the Games are, comparatively, around the corner.

He said: “This ceremony has been a triple signal and a triple incentive. It's a signal for the organising committee who knows there is only one year to perfect and finalise everything - and believe me this is a big booster for an organising committee to have this deadline in sight.

"But it’s a great thing for the athletes because this is the final stretch of their preparations for the ultimate goal. Finally it is important symbolically for the public to elicit the great support
that Canada and the world will give to the Games."

Rogge said he had never had any doubt that Vancouver had been the best choice from the original candidate cities and he looked forward to the test events which would prove the point.

He added: “I’ve been to Vancouver many times now. I've seen the progress and the infrastructure but I've seen no athletes. The test events will show us the glow in the eyes of the athletes – we will see their drive and ambition and that is what sport is about."

Keywords · Rogge · International Olympic Committee · Vancouver · 2010 · IOC · Whistler

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