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Press Release

31.01.18

Extraordinary Slovenian Olympic legacy

The Olympic Games are the biggest sports event in the world, and the dream of every top athlete. They are also a privilege. Competing at the Olympics is the fruit of years of preparation, training and self-discipline. In the entire history of the Olympic Games, Slovenian athletes have frequently achieved exceptional results.  The Olympic Games are an honour and reward for our athletes.

 

Of course, the path to dreams coming true is not easy, and only the best pass the test. This year’s Slovenian Olympic team for the winter games in PyeongChang is once again made up of the best representatives of individual events and disciplines. They have to meet the criteria for making the cut, as formulated by the International Olympic Committee, the Olympic Committee of Slovenia, the Association of Sports Federations and national sectoral sports associations. Before competing in the Olympics, Slovenian sports people are divided into three quality rankings: those with the potential to win medals, those capable of a high ranking (between first and third place) and junior athletes.

 

Slovenians in the Olympic Village

During the Games, members of the Olympic squads representing Slovenia will be living in the Olympic Village. In South Korea there will be two different Olympic Villages for Slovenian athletes. Slovenia’s competitors in Alpine skiing, biathlon, snowboarding, ski jumping, cross-country, Nordic combination, freestyle and luge are staying in PyeongChang Olympic Village in the mountains. Meanwhile, the village down on the coast (Gangneung Olympic Village) will accommodate the Olympic ice hockey team.

Entry to the two Olympic Villages is only permitted for competitors and accredited accompanying personnel (coaches, service staff, medics, etc.), and media representatives are not allowed in. Smoking or the sale of alcohol are prohibited in the villages. Guests are allowed in to the Olympic Villages only by prior appointment.

   

Since the organisers of the Olympics are aware how important it is for those living in the villages, i.e. the athletes, to feel as comfortable and at home as possible during their stay, the sites are built in such a way as to offer them “life” as it would be in a small town, complete with shops and sports venues, and even hair salons, banks, post offices, cinemas and more.

 

Lion-hearted Slovenian Olympians

And even more…In the atmosphere of the modern Olympics, where often politics and advertising have a role that at least equals that of sports, Slovenians can lay claim not just to outstanding sports achievements but to a true and ancient Olympic spirit. One such example is the story of the courageous Slovenian cross-country skier Petra Majdič. This year (2018) it will be eight years since her unforgettable cross-country performance, when she earned herself the status of an eternal Olympic heroine for her sporting example at the 2010 winter games in Vancouver.

 
After clearly suffering a serious injury on the cross-country trail, Petra got up again and persevered to the finish. And not just that – this incredible sportswoman won the bronze medal. The then head of the Slovenian Olympic team medical staff said after the accident: “Petra earned this incredible result with four broken ribs and a pneumothorax (collapsed lung), which allowed air to gather between the ribs and lungs.” So the diagnosis was serious, and she later needed serious treatment. Nevertheless, Petra attended the official medal award ceremony in the square in Whistler, although she arrived in a wheelchair with a tube placed in her chest.

 

Fortunately there were no long-term consequences, and such accidents are rare. But this event was not just a dramatic story, it also illustrated the true sporting spirit, and that is something Slovenians are especially proud of in their athletes, and we all wish them the best of luck!


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