National Olympic Committees and their winter sports athletes were officially invited by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thursday to take part in the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games, which open one year from Thursday.
Invitations were sent from IOC headquarters in Lausanne, and a ceremony took place in the Republic of Korea at the Gangneung Hockey Centre with IOC Coordination Commission chair Gunilla Lindberg, and representatives of the government of the Republic of Korea in attendance.
The celebrations showcased Korean culture with a concert with K-pop stars and the 2018 Choir. It included the unveiling of the Olympic torch and torchbearer uniform which were represented by Olympic figure skating gold medallist Yuna Kim, Youth Olympic Games cross country gold medallist Magnus Kim, and five young future leaders from Korea.
IOC President Bach said in a video message, “the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 will open up new horizons. It will connect the people and the passion of the Republic of Korea with the world.”
“PyeongChang will transform into a hub for Asian winter sports. For the first time, the magic of Olympic sport on snow and ice will come to Korea.
“As an Olympian, I know of the excitement that every athlete feels just before the competition. So I wish the athletes all the very best as they prepare to make their Olympic dreams come true in PyeongChang next year.”
A number of test events have already been completed and ticket sales are now underway. 91,000 applications have been received with 22,400 places to be filled.
Official ambassadors for the Games are Korean figure skating legend Yuna Kim and U.S. Alpine skier Lindsey Vonn.
The PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games take place February 9 to 25, 2018.