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IOC President: Sochi 2014 has been ‘a special experience’

23 Feb 2014

Sochi, Russia: IOC President Thomas Bach held a closing press conference at the Main Press Centre on Sunday afternoon, just five hours before the closing ceremony of the 22nd Olympic Winter Games at the Olympic Stadium Fisht nearby.


President Bach, overseeing his first Olympics as head of the IOC since succeeding Jacques Rogge last September, said: “We are close to the end of the great Olympic Winter Games. The response we get from all the different participants is really overwhelmingly positive, whether you speak with athletes, with the NOCs, with national federations, with sponsors, with broadcasters; you hear a lot of praise for these Games.”


Bach said the most important feedback came from the athletes, and said there had not been a single complaint from them during the four days he spent in the different Olympic villages.


“They loved the sports facilities, the quality of the Olympic villages, and what impressed the most was the proximity of the Olympic villages and their venues,” he added.


Bach listed a few records set in Sochi:


·  2,876 athletes


·  88 NOCs


·  More than 6 NOCs competing for the first time


·  More than 40 per cent of the athletes are women


·  2,631 doping tests – a 64 per cent increase on Vancouver 2010


·  88,000 hours of coverage on TV and digital platforms


·  More than 300 TV channels broadcasting the Games


·  382 Olympic Solidarity scholarships for athletes, out of which 244 qualified for Sochi 2014 and 15 won medals, 13 of them women.


President Bach said the participation figures proved the success of the Sochi Games and were down to “excellent” organization.


“I think all the systems here were working extremely well, from transportation to security over the Olympic villages, the food and everything, really excellent,” he said, before praising the volunteers.


“All this together made these Games, I think, a real special experience.”

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