12. - 19. 2. 2011

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Rogge: I am happy about the Festival!
Monday February 14 2011 03:17 PM
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The President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Jacques Rogge paid a compliment to the organisers of the 10th EYOWF in Liberec. "I liked Sunday’s Opening Ceremony, it was very creative," said Rogge. "The European Youth Olympic Festival is the child of Jacques Rogge and twenty years after it was born he can see how it has grown," commented Milan Jirásek, the President of the Czech Olympic Committee (COC).

Mr. Rogge, how would you evaluate the organisation of the 10th European Olympic Winter Festival in Liberec and the current form of EYOWF in general?
"I am very satisfied with the organisation in Liberec, the Czechs are doing a great job and everything is ready. As for the idea of the Czechs organising the European Youth Olympics, it proved the right choice. It was attended by many future Olympic medallists, such as Kostelič, Björgen, Pärson or Plushenko. I like the Festival not being gigantic and also that it is not only about results, but also about the education of these young athletes."

How did you like the Opening Ceremony in the Tipsport Arena in Liberec?
"In my life, I have seen about 150 Opening Ceremonies so I have some background as a judge. I can say it was very nice and it was a success. EYOWF is an event for the young and I consider it right to have a creative and modern ceremony."

Last year we had the world Summer Youth Olympic Games in Singapore and in a year we have the Winter Olympic Games in Innsbruck.  Do you think the Olympic Games are competition for this Festival?
"No, I do not think so. On the contrary, I am convinced they complement each other very well. While the world Youth Olympic Games have 28 Olympic disciplines, we keep eleven disciplines in the summer edition and nine in the winter edition of EYOWF which take turns regularly. I am convinced that many winners from Liberec are going to win next year in Innsbruck."

Do you think that such a small country as the Czech Republic stands a chance of organising big Olympic Games?
"Yes. The Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer are proof of it and they were one of the most successful Games in history. And Lillehammer has a population of a mere 20,000 inhabitants."

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Did you enjoy the EYOWF 2011 in the Liberec Region?