In a few short days a group of the best junior British athletes will be heading out to Liberec in the Czech Republic to take part in the European Youth Olympic Winter Festival. We're extremely proud to announce that Chalets Direct-sponsored Sam Clissold will be amongst them.
Founded in 1990 by Jacques Rogge, current president of the International Olympic Committee, the European Youth Olympic festivals take place every two years, with both summer and winter games. The festivals are regarded as enormously important, and the European games were set up to follow the traditions of the Asian and Panama Games. It is the top event for young athletes aged between 14 and 18 and provides real experience of top level competition. Previous medal winners have gone on to be world class champions in senior events - Janica Kostelic, Anja Paerson and Denise Karbon to name just a few.
For competitors, the Youth Olympic Festivals are as prestigious as the adult versions. The Olympic flame will burn throughout the event, there will opening and closing ceremonies, the Olympic oath is sworn, national anthems are played as medals are handed out on the podium.
The winter festival comprises eight winter sports including Alpine Skiing, Snowboarding, Cross Country, Biathlon, Ski Jumping and Figure Skating. This year's event will see over 1500 athletes from 44 European countries. Team GB consists of 15 athletes from 5 wintersports disciplines. You can see the full line up on the British Olympic Association website.
Team GB Chef de Mission, Jan Paterson said: “The European Youth Olympic Winter Festival offers our young winter athletes a unique opportunity to participate in a multisport environment which is very much like the one they would experience at an Olympic Winter Games. I am delighted to be taking such a talented team to Liberec, the EYOWF is a fantastic opportunity for the athletes to experience high-level competition against some of Europe’s leading winter sport nations, and learn more about the Olympic values of excellence, friendship and respect.”
We'd like to congratulate all of these talented teenagers, as well as Sam of course, on getting selected to represent their country at such a major international competition. And of course we'd like to wish them lots of success. Enjoy the experience and do the best you can!