Bavarian Olympians step up as role models for Munich 2018 bid
SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT / Sports Features Communications
MUNICH, Apr 15: German Prime Minister Horst Seehofer is thrilled to have a stellar line up of Bavarian Olympians standing behind Munich's bid to win host rights to the 2018 Winter Games.
Yesterday in Munich he welcomed the athletes from the Vancouver Olympics and Paralympics for a celebratory reception and hailed their credibility as key role models to represent the country and the bid.
The reception took place at the Emperor’s Hall at the Munich Residenz and highlighted the importance of winter sport in Bavaria.
Seehofer said: “We are celebrating fantastic ambassadors for Bavaria who were the perfect standard bearers for our 2018 bid, in front of sports fans worldwide, during the Vancouver Games.”
Olympians attending the reception included Maria Riesch (double gold medallist in Vancouver in women's super combined downhill and slalom), Anja Huber (Vancouver bronze medallist, women's skeleton) and Gerd Gradwohl (Paralympics bronze medallist, downhill visually impaired).
“We want to make it clear that sport is a powerful and unifying social tool, a fascinating force that brings us together and makes us stronger”, said Seehofer.
Thomas Bach, an IOC vice-president and president of the German Olympic Sports Federation, also attended together with bid ceo Will Bogner along with other star Olympians such as luge legend Georg Hackl and skier Markus Wasmeier.
Bogner said: “We are very grateful to the Bavarian State Chancellery. By hosting this reception they have shown how important the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games are to Bavaria.
“We have received full support from the Bavarian State Government throughout the application process, particularly from Prime Minister Seehofer. The stakeholder team is working well together.”
Munich’s 2018 project is to stage environmentally-friendly Games with true Bavarian flavour. The alpine events are slated for Garmisch-Partenkirchen with arena events in the city of Munich - which would be the first city to have played host to both summer and winter Games.
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