NOC Chef de Missions Gather in PyeongChang
PyeongChang (Republic of Korea); February 2, 2017: The National Olympic Committee (NOC) Chef de Mission Seminar for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games is well underway at the Alpensia Convention Centre. The PyeongChang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (POCOG) welcomed 132 NOC delegates yesterday and they are using the three day session to present on Games-time operation and services.
The information shared will also be outlined in the Chef de Mission Dossier and there will be a number of side meetings as needed with their NOC Relations Representatives to ensure they return home equipped with all the necessary information to continue planning their trip to PyeongChang in just over a year’s time.
POCOG President Mr Hee-beom Lee welcomed everyone yesterday by saying, “I am honored to welcome you to the PyeongChang 2018 NOC Chef de Mission Seminar. I trust the Chefs de Mission Seminar will be an opportunity for you to get all the important information and updates in your preparations for the PyeongChang 2018 Games. As athletes are the heart of the Games, it is also essential for us to listen and learn from your expertise and experiences to move forward in our final planning for operational readiness. We will do our best to deliver a most memorable and athlete-centered Games for all NOC delegations and the entire Olympic Family.”
"It is great to be in PyeongChang with just a little over a year to go until Games-time,” said Team USA Chef de Mission Alan ASHLEY. “These few days are really invaluable for our planning- to see the venues as they near completion and to hear more from the organizing committee on the final planning phase. The Games are really starting to take shape and I have been very impressed by what I have seen here so far. Our athletes and staff are all excited and looking forward to being here in 2018."
JOC executive board member Toshimasa FURUKAWA said, “We were able to confirm the readiness of PyeongChang 2018 through the presentations by the Organising Committee and the venue tour. PyeongChang has wonderful snow which is necessary for the Olympic Winter Games and it is sure to be a splendid Games. As a host country for the Sapporo Asian Winter Games and PyeongChang 2018, Beijing 2022 waiting in line, we would like to set the winter sports alight, create excitement and spread and promote the Olympic movement together.”
Team GB Chef de Mission Mike Hay said, “The final Chef de Mission seminar has provided us with an invaluable update across a range of areas including logistics, transport, venues and villages and we have been pleased with the progress we have seen. We were particularly impressed by compactness of the two clusters and the proximity of the competition venues to the Olympic Villages. With over 95% of competition venues now complete we are confident of infrastructure the Organising Committee has in place to host an excellent Games. The Games will be biggest ever Olympic Winter Games with over 102 events and over 100 nations competing and we are confident South Korea and PyeongChang are ready to put on a great show for our Team GB athletes.”
Aside from several presentations, delegates are being taken on a tour of the Olympic competition and non-competition venues in both the coastal and mountain cluster areas. Day one covered the ice sport venues of Gangneung and today they moved onto the snow sport venues in PyeongChang as well as the non-competition venues which include the Olympic Village, and Opening and Closing Ceremony venue - the Olympic Plaza. The final day tomorrow will take them to Jeongseon and Bokwang where the Alpine Skiiing speed events and Freestyle Skiing/Snowboard will take place respectively.
With Gangneung coming to life next week with the one year to go celebrations, and the ticket sales being launched to coincide with this marquee event, the support and attendance of the Chefs this week is an important milestone in itself as the Games begin to come to life and the preparations for officials and athletes enter their critical phase.
The National Paralympic Committee Chef de Mission seminar will take place from 01-03 March and will follow a similar format to ensure everyone is well informed and prepared ahead of the Paralympic Winter Games.