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9th European Youth Olympic Festival to begin this weekend

February 13, 2009

The event expects to welcome almost 1’000 young athletes, aged 15 to 18, organised under the auspices of the IOC and the European Olympic Committees. The 9th edition of the event boasts a record number of participants coming from all over Europe: from Iceland to Israel.

“This is going to be the biggest of all the Festivals that have been held so far,” says Tadeusz Pilarz, President of the Organizing Committee. “We have received entries from 47 countries so far, which is an absolute record, as there were only 43 countries competing in Jaca in Spain two years ago. We have received 1620 entries, and 1100 out of those are entered competitors. The others are coaches, teams’ captains, service personnel, a considerable number are VIP and invited guests mainly from other European Olympic Committees.”

The biggest number of athletes will represent Switzerland. The Swiss team will comprise 103 people in total, including 73 competitors. The Russians will also bring a strong squad, including 68 athletes. The smallest representations will be those of Andorra (2), San Marino, Malta and Monaco (3), and Cyprus (4).

Competitions in five of FIS’s six Olympic disciplines are on the schedule, the three Nordic disciplines (Cross-Country, Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined), Alpine Skiing and Snowboarding. For the detailed schedule click here (http://www.slask-beskidy.pl/pliki/programme.pdf) and for general information, visit the event’s web page at http://www.slask-beskidy.pl and, of course, check out the updates on this webite.

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