2018 Winter Olympics
The 2018 Winter Olympics, officially known as the XXIII Olympic Winter Games (French: Les XXIIIeme Jeux olympiques d'hiver; Hangul: 제23회 동계 올림픽; RR: Je-isipsamhoe Donggye Ollimpik), and commonly known as PyeongChang 2018 ([pʰjʌŋ.tɕʰaŋ]) is a major international multi-sport event scheduled to take place from 9 to 25 February 2018 in Pyeongchang County, South Korea.
|Host city||Pyeongchang, South Korea|
Korean: 하나된 열정. (Hanadoen Yeoljeong)
|Nations participating||90 (estimated)|
|Events||102 in 7 sports (15 disciplines)|
|Opening ceremony||9 February (2 months from now)|
|Closing ceremony||25 February|
|Stadium||Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium|
|Pyeongchang Winter Olympics|
|Hangul||평창 동계 올림픽|
|Hanja||平昌 冬季 올림픽|
|Revised Romanization||Pyeongchang Donggye Ollimpik|
|McCune–Reischauer||P'yŏngch'ang Tonggye Ollimp'ik|
The elected host city was announced on 6 July 2011 by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) after the 123rd IOC Session in Durban, South Africa. Pyeongchang won its bid on the first round of voting, receiving more votes than both Munich, Germany and Annecy, France.
These will be South Korea's second Olympic Games and its first Winter Games; Seoul hosted the Summer Games in 1988. Pyeongchang will be the third Asian city to host the Winter Games; the first two were in Japan, at Sapporo (1972) and Nagano (1998).
Pyeongchang bid to host both the 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympic Games but lost in the final rounds of voting by three and four votes respectively. Pyeongchang won its bid for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in the first round of voting, receiving 63 of the 95 votes cast, giving it the majority required to be elected host city.
Munich also launched a bid to host these Games. Prior to Beijing's successful 2022 Winter Olympicsbid, Munich would have become the first city to host both the Winter and the Summer Games, having previously hosted the 1972 Summer Olympics, but received 25 votes. Annecy launched a bid, but failed to secure public support from local citizens. Their bid received seven votes.
Host city election
|2018 Winter Olympics bidding results|
The ticket prices for the 2018 Winter Olympics were announced in April 2016 and went on sale in October 2016, ranging from ₩20,000 (approximately $17) to ₩900,000 ($776). Tickets for the opening and closing ceremonies will range from ₩220,000 ($190) to ₩1.5 million ($1293). The exact prices were determined through market research; around 50% of the tickets are due to cost about ₩80,000 ($69) or less, and tickets in sports that are relatively unknown in the region, such as biathlon and luge, will be made cheaper in order to encourage attendance. By contrast, figure skating and the Men's hockey gold medal game carry the most expensive tickets of the Games.
As of 11 October, domestic ticket sales for the games have been slow. Of the 750,000 seats allocated to South Koreans, only 20.7% have been sold. International sales have been a bit better, with 59.7% of the 320,000 allocated tickets sold. Sales of tickets to the Paralympic Games are even more dismal, with only 4.2 percent sold.
On 5 August 2011, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced the formation of the Pyeongchang 2018 Coordination Commission. On 4 October 2011, it was announced that the Organizing Committee for the 2018 Winter Olympics will be headed by Kim Jin-sun. The Pyeongchang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic & Paralympic Winter Games (POCOG) was launched at its inaugural assembly on 19 October 2011. The first tasks of the organizing committee was to put together a master plan for the games as well as forming a design for the venues. The IOC Coordination Commission for the 2018 Winter Olympics made their first visit to Pyeongchang in March 2012. By then, construction was already underway on the Olympic Village. In June 2012, construction began on a high-speed rail line that will connect Pyeongchang to Seoul.
The International Paralympic Committee met with the Pyeongchang 2018 organizing committee for an orientation in July 2012. Then-IOC President Jacques Rogge visited Pyeongchang for the first time in February 2013.
On 27 June 2014 the PyeongChang Olympic Committee announced their mascot selection contest. The contest ran from 15 September 2014 to 30 September 2014. The 2013 Special Olympics World Winter Games were held in Pyeongchang.
The Pyeongchang Organizing Committee for the 2018 Olympic & Paralympic Winter Games created Pyeongchang WINNERS in 2014 by recruiting university students living in South Korea to spread awareness of the Olympic Games through social networking services and news articles.
Pyeongchang (Mountain cluster)
Alpensia Sports Park
- Pyeongchang Olympic Stadium – opening and closing ceremonies
- Alpensia Ski Jumping Centre – ski jumping, Nordic combined, snowboarding (big air)
- Alpensia Biathlon Centre – biathlon
- Alpensia Cross-Country Centre – cross-country skiing, Nordic combined
- Alpensia Sliding Centre – luge, bobsleigh, and skeleton
- Olympic Village
- Yongpyong Alpine Centre – alpine skiing (slalom, giant slalom)
- Bokwang Snow Park – freestyle skiing and snowboard
- Jeongseon Alpine Centre – alpine skiing (downhill, super-G, and combined)
Gangneung (Coastal cluster)
- Gangneung Hockey Centre – ice hockey (men competition)
- Gangneung Curling Centre – curling
- Gangneung Oval – speed skating
- Gangneung Ice Arena – short track speed skating and figure skating
In addition, a stand-alone venue is located on the grounds of Catholic Kwandong University:
- Kwandong Hockey Centre – ice hockey (women competition)
The 2018 Winter Olympics will feature 102 events in 15 sports. Four new disciplines in existing sports will be introduced in Pyeongchang, including big air snowboarding (which will replace the parallel slalom), mixed doubles curling, mass start speed skating, and mixed team alpine skiing.
For the first time since 1998, the National Hockey League will not provide accommodations (including a break in the season for all teams during the Olympics) to allow its players to participate in the Men's ice hockey tournament. The NHL's decision stemmed from demands for the IOC to cover the cost of insuring the NHL players that participate in the Games. Although it did pay to insure NHL players in Sochi, the IOC was unwilling to do so for Pyeongchang, and was concerned that the NHL's demand could set a precedent for other professional sports bodies to follow in the future. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman added that the IOC didn't allow the NHL to promote the involvement of its players in the Olympics. The NHL secured the cooperation of the International Ice Hockey Federation and the IOC, who agreed to establish a blacklist forbidding national teams from nominating or accepting players under NHL contract to their Olympic rosters.
Numbers in parentheses indicate the number of medal events contested in each sports discipline.
- Alpine skiing(11) ( )
- Biathlon(11) ( )
- Bobsleigh(3) ( )
- Cross-country skiing(12) ( )
- Curling(3) ( )
- Figure skating(5) ( )
- Freestyle skiing(10) ( )
- Ice hockey(2) ( )
- Luge(4) ( )
- Nordic combined(3) ( )
- Short track speed skating(8) ( )
- Skeleton(2) ( )
- Ski jumping(4) ( )
- Snowboarding(10) ( )
- Speed skating(14) ( )
Participating National Olympic Committees
- A total of 84 teams have qualified at least one athlete so far (83 nations, and the delegation from Russia which will compete under the IOC flag).
- Ecuador, Eritrea, Kosovo, Malaysia, and Singapore are scheduled to make their Winter Olympics debut if they decide to participate.
- North Korean athletes will be allowed to cross the DMZ into South Korea since two North Korean figure skaters qualified.
- Russia's status remained unclear due to the state-sponsored doping program scandal. On 5 December 2017 it was announced that the Russian Olympic Commission had been suspended. Individual athletes who qualified and can demonstrate they have complied with the IOC's doping regulations will be allowed to compete as "Olympic Athletes from Russia," with the Olympic anthem played in the event they win a medal. Vladimir Putin has repeatedly threatened to boycott the Games if Russian athletes are not allowed to compete under the Russian flag. However, his spokesman later denied that. According to the Russian media, Putin will announce his decision on December 6, 2017.
|OC||Opening ceremony||●||Event competitions||1||Event finals||EG||Exhibition gala||CC||Closing ceremony|
|Cross country skiing||1||1||2||1||1||1||1||2||1||1||12|
|Short track speed skating||1||1||2||1||3||8|
The emblem for the Games was unveiled on 3 May 2013. It is a stylized representation of the hangul letters ㅍp and ㅊch, being the initial sounds of 평창Pyeongchang. Additionally the left symbol is said to represent the Korean philosophical triad of heaven, earth and humanity (Korean: 천지인cheon-ji-in), and the right symbol to represent a crystal of ice.
The name of the host city has been intentionally formatted in all official materials as "PyeongChang", rather than "Pyeongchang". This is to alleviate potential confusion with Pyongyang, the similarly-named capital of neighbouring North Korea.
Broadcast rights to the 2018 Winter Olympics in some countries were already sold as part of long-term broadcast rights deals, including the Games' local rightsholder SBS—who extended its rights to the Olympics through 2024 in July 2011.
On 29 June 2015, the IOC announced that Discovery Communications had acquired exclusive rights to the Olympics from 2018 through 2024 across Europe, excluding Russia, on all platforms. Discovery's rights deal will, initially, not cover France due to pre-existing rights deals with France Télévisions that run through the 2020 Games. Unlike previous pan-European deals, such as with the European Broadcasting Union and Sportfive, Discovery will not solely serve as a reseller, and intends to carry coverage on its regional properties, such as Eurosport, but has committed to sub-licensing at least 100 hours of coverage to free-to-air networks. In the United Kingdom, Discovery will hold exclusive pay television rights under license from the BBC, in return for the BBC sub-licensing the free-to-air rights to the 2022 and 2024 Olympics from Discovery.
In the United States, the Games will once again be broadcast by NBC under a long-term contract with NBCUniversal; it will be NBC's first Olympics without long-time primary host Bob Costas, who announced his retirement from the role in favour of Mike Tirico on 7 February 2017. On 28 March 2017, NBC also announced that it would air most primetime coverage simultaneously in all time zones, rather than tape-delayed for the west coast.
Concerns and controversies
On 20 September 2017, South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in said the country is pushing to ensure security at Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games amid rising tensions over the North Korea’s nuclear tests and a series of missile launches. However, on the next day, French Minister of Youth Affairs and SportsLaura Flessel-Colovic said France’s Winter Olympics team will boycott the games unless South Korea's security is guaranteed.
On 22 September 2017, Austria and Germany joined France in considering not attending the Games. Karl Stoss, head of Austria’s national Olympic committee, said that, "if the situation worsens and the security of our athletes is no longer guaranteed, we will not go to South Korea." The German interior ministry said the security question and the possibility of keeping the German team at home would be addressed “in good time” by the government. Several days later, Laura Flessel-Colovic reaffirmed France's participation in the games. Both countries are yet to decide on reaffirming.
On 5 December 2017, the IOC voted to ban Russia from the 2018 Winter Olympics. Russian athletes may be allowed to participate under the Olympic flag if cleared by a panel led by Valerie Fourneyron, which will feature representatives from the IOC, the World Anti-Doping Agency, and the Doping Free Sport Unit of the Global Association of International Sports Federations.