VANOC begins select testing of field of play at first official Sport Event

    WHISTLER, BC, Feb. 20 /CNW/ - The Vancouver Organizing Committee for the
2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) will begin testing its
operational readiness at the first official Sport Event for alpine skiing,
taking place in Whistler, BC from February 21 to February 24.
    Sport Events provide VANOC with an opportunity to test various functions
and collaborate with the winter International Sport Federations, while
offering the Canadian public a chance to learn more about the 15 winter sport
disciplines that will be showcased at the 2010 Winter Games, and the athletes
who will likely compete in 2010.
    With a focus on the field of play, VANOC will limit its testing at the
event to the VANOC workforce; the chiefs of course; approximately 800 on-hill
volunteers; snowmaking; grooming; safety systems; technical and logistical
components of race day operations; and collaboration with the International
Ski Federation (FIS). The one exception to field-of-play testing is the timing
and scoring, which is being provided through Alpine Canada Alpin.
    "Sport Events play an important role in preparing VANOC for the 2010
Winter Games by providing us with the opportunity to test specific aspects of
Games-time operations," said Tim Gayda, VANOC's vice president, Sport. "Our
priority is to test the sport field of play while supporting the delivery of a
world class event that meets the requirements of the International
    Competition will take place on Franz's Run for the ladies and the Dave
Murray Downhill for the men. After two days of training, the ladies' course is
in excellent condition and competitors are looking forward to race day.
    "This course will make a great Olympic course," said Tina Maze, a top-15
Super-G and Downhill competitor from Slovenia. "Every Downhill is different,
but this course has so many turns and technical components that it makes it
very special."
    "This is a great race hill that has everything a good Downhill needs,"
said Atle Skaardal, FIS Chief Race Director for the Ladies FIS Alpine World
Cup. "We've had two good training runs and I'm very happy so far with how
everything is going."
    At future events, VANOC will test other Games-time functions, including,
but not limited to, transportation, technology, food and beverage,
accreditation, and venue services. The next Sport Event where VANOC will be
conducting operational testing is scheduled for October 2008, in the sport of
short track speed skating. The full Sport Event schedule is available online

    VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging
of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The
2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from
February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the Paralympic
Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010.

For further information:

For further information: For additional information on VANOC's
operational testing at Sport Events, please contact: Suzanne Walters, VANOC
Media Relations, (778) 328-6386; Mary Fraser, VANOC Media Relations, (778)

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