At a One-Year-to-Go Countdown Ceremony in Gangneung, PyeongChang 2018 unveiled its Olympic Torch and torchbearer uniform Thursday at the Gangneung Ice Hockey Centre.
The ceremony marked a significant milestone in PyeongChang’s journey to host the Games which began in 2001 when the city first planned a bid to host the 2010 Winter Olympics.
The 700 mm torch represents the altitude of PyeongChang which is 700 meters above sea level. The white and gold tones, which are the main colours of PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games Torch Relay, represent the Olympic Winter Games – a global festival that is held on white snow and ice.
The shape of the flame has five prongs – ” * ” the symbol of PyeongChang, The symbol is also engraved around the bottom half and top of the torch.
The five-angled shape in the middle of the cap represents the spirit of sports, which connects races, nations, religions, genders, cultures, and the five continents around the world united with passion. The flame will spark passion throughout the globe and connect us together while demonstrating the power of sport to unite and inspire people in a way that little else does, said PyeongChang 2018.
Designer of the torch is Korean Young Se KIM. The torches will be produced by PyeongChang 2018 official supplier, Hanwha Corporation. The company also produced the Seoul 1988 Olympic Torch.
The torch is designed so that the flame will continue to burn in various weather conditions, considering the strong winds and heavy snow in Korea. There is also a pentagon shaped hole in the bottom of the torch so any water can drain to the bottom, keeping the flame gleaming in rainy conditions.
The torchbearer uniform which was also unveiled, is produced by PyeongChang 2018 Official Partner The North Face. The design combines the colours of the white Olympic Torch and blue, yellow, black, green and red from the Olympic Rings.
To make the uniform comfortable and practical for torchbearers who will run in different weather conditions, the back and sleeves are made of water-repellent fabric and the front and shoulders are made out of waterproof fabric. Hybrid material was used for the jacket filling to keep the torchbearers warm in the cold.
POCOG President LEE Hee-beom said “unveiling the Olympic Torch at the PyeongChang 2018 One-Year-to-Go Ceremony represents the start of a countdown to a remarkable celebration.”
“With its beautiful design and technical features, the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Torch will become a symbol of excitement and inspiration of the Olympic Games. The Olympic Torch Relay will bring the spotlight to PyeongChang, sparking passion to connect the world together.”
Together with the three Presenting Partners – Coca-Cola,Samsung and KT – the torch will be carried by 7,500 torchbearers during the torch relay, which will commence late in 2017.