POSTED: February 27th 2011


Five-strong mascot team to project Sochi 2014's commercial message

Sochi's Winter Olympics mascots - the Polar Bear, Leopard and Hare with (inset) the Paralympics' Ray of Light and Snowflake / Sochi2018
Sochi's Winter Olympics mascots - the Polar Bear, Leopard and Hare with (inset) the Paralympics' Ray of Light and Snowflake / Sochi2018

KEIR RADNEDGE / Sports Features Communications

LONDON/SOCHI, Feb 27: The days when one mascot was perfectly appropriate for any sports event appears to be over. A nationwide competition in Russia  has come up with a hare, a polar bear and a leopard to share the role for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.

A public vote staged during a 90-minute live television show also selected depitions of a ray of light and a snowflake as the Paralympic mascots.

Sochi 2014 ceo Dmitry Chernyshenko said: "This is the first time in Olympic history that an entire country has been involved in choosing the mascots." Explaining the multiplicity - or indecision - of the three-in-one projection, he added: "There are three mascots to represent the three places on the Olympic podium."

The Sochi 2014 election council had decided that the top three characters with most votes by phone or text would share the 'mascotcy' However the Paralympic pair were chosen by Paralympic champions including Olesya Vladykina, Alexander Alyabyev, Vladimir Kiselyov, Margarita Koptilova, Xenia Ovsyannikova and Igor Pustovit.

All rights to the mascot images belong to the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee. The designers were  Oleg Serdechniy  (polar bear), Vadim Pak (leopard), Silviya Petrova (hare),  Natalia Balashova (ray of light) and Anna Zhilinsky (snowflake).

The contest ran from September 1 until December 5 and 24,048 ideas were sifted and whittled down to a shortlist of 11 by an organisers' advisory panel.

Keywords · Sochi · 2014 Winter Olympics · mascots

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