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A gallimaufry of 2018 Pyeongchang bits

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Oh, don't make me use the Google translator...

Tu ne parles pas français? Sacrilège! C'est grand papa qui dois se tourner dans sa tombe...

(Also, did Tesla actually just say something vaguely positive about PyeongChang? I think Rob should look into this, might be a case of account hacking O.o)

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In the spirit of Toby Dawson's first Lunar New Year in Korea...

I was just reading about how Toby is adjusting to life in Korea as the freestyle ski team head coach, when I read again about his Olympic story:

Dawson was lost at a crowded market here in Busan -- when he was just three.

He was then adopted to a ski-instructor couple in Colorado -- with whom he grew up to become a bronze medallist for freestyle skiing at the 2006 Winter Olympic Games in Torino, Italy.

And a year later, he met his biological father in Korea.

Today, he get to bow and say Happy New Year to his parents as well as his relatives for the first time in his life.

I know it's old news, but I will never get tired of this story.


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Throughout the winter, Dawson can be spotted in Pyeongchang -- the city he has represented for two Olympic bids.

And Korea's first mogul ski coach is already in full swing, gearing his team up for the games.

Although there are only about ten members on the team now, Dawson says that the young athletes have what it takes to become Olympians.

[interview : Toby Dawson, Coach

Freestyle National Team

] "We still have a long way to go, but fortunately I have some great athletes.

They are really excited to learn and they are fast learners, which is going to be very helpful.

So if I push them to the right direction, we can move quickly and hopefully catch the world soon."

So far only one Korean on the team has qualified to compete in previous Olympics.

But with Dawson on board, these future Olympians are aiming higher.

[interview : Seo Ji-won, Mogul skier

Freestyle National Team ] "We never had a coach before, and today he just taught us several new tricks.

My goal is to qualify for the Sochi Winter Olympics and I'm shooting for the podium in Pyeongchang when the Winter Games are held here."

But Dawson also points out that the future Olympic venue needs a few more upgrades to help the athletes reach their dreams.

[interview : Toby Dawson, Coach

Freestyle National Team

] "I think we definitely need more training facilties for the athletes.

We have to travel around the world to get our training, and it would be better if we could do more training in Korea - so that we have more time with our families and friends and also get really strong training times as well."

And he is more than committed to bringing out the potential from his team leading up to 2018 and beyond.

[interview : Toby Dawson, Coach

Freestyle National Team ] "In 2018, I plan on still being here with the mogul team.

We've started a mogul family here and I can't wait to see them successful -- standing on the podium, going through the same emotions that I went through in 2006 in Turin, Italy -- when I won my medal."

Well, Dawson's past itself is already an amazing story, but it seems like he's got an even more exciting future ahead of him.

[Reporter : ] That's right. Although he signed a contract lasting only until the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games, Dawson is determined to look after his students until the games are held in Pyeongchang.

I also met him in Durban.

He may be an American by nationality, but it seems like he is Korean by heart.

[Reporter : ] But like he said in his Pyeongchang's Olympic bid presentation in Durban, had he not been raised in an environment like Vail, where he established himself a top-ranking skier -- and let's say he grew up in his hometown of Busan, the chances would have been slimmer of him becoming a world-level athlete since Korea's infrastructure for the sport wasn't and is not as competitive as that of other countries that excel in snow sports.

So I'm really looking forward to witnessing Koreans reach the top under Dawson's guidance and with support from the nation and the people preparing for the Pyeongchang Games.

Let's wait and see if these rookies can become medalists like Dawson here on home soil.


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This new system on the new ice rink will look good for the envrioment. I'm liking it. I wonder if this will be for the figure skating venue or the Hockey venue also.

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An article on American IOC member Angela Ruggiero on her role with the IOC Coordination Commission which will oversee Pyeongchang's development efforts. Glad to have you aboard Angela!


March 18 - Four-time Olympic medallist Angela Ruggiero (pictured) of the United States admits that she is delighted to be part the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Coordination Commission for the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics and Paralympics with the 11-member team set to make their first visit to the Korean city this week.

Pyeongchang were awarded the 2018 Games last year after they trounced rivals Munich in Germany and the French city of Annecy in first round voting at the IOC Session in Durban, South Africa.

The Commission, which will be chaired by Sweden's Gunilla Lindberg, will be shown early preparations for the competition and given a number of presentations by Jin-Sun Kim (pictured below, second left), the head of Pyeongchang's new Organising Committee and a former Governor of Gangwon Province.

The visit will be Ruggiero's first as part of an IOC Coordination Commission after the retired ice hockey player was nominated by her fellow sportsmen and women, along with British bob skeleton rider Adam Pengilly, as one of the 12 elected members on the IOC's Athlete's Commission during Vancouver 2010.

"I was part of the 2018 Evaluation Commission where I got see all the bids for the Games and that was a great experience for me," Ruggiero told insidethegames.

"So it will be really special to see the Pyeongchang bid change and go through the step-by-step process of organising for the 2018 Winter Games.

"As an athlete, you just show up.

"You are there for a few weeks and you feel that it is amazing to compete at an Olympics.

"But you don't realise the years that go into the preparations and all of the people and the budget that goes into making it happen.

"I think that is a good thing though because if you were worrying about that as an athlete, then you wouldn't be focusing on your sport."

It marks a busy month for the 32-year-old from California, who was recently appointed as chair of the IOC Coordination Commission for the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics and Paralympics in Lillehammer.

But the Harvard University graduate, who is also a three-time world champion in ice hockey, said that she hopes the Commission's work goes unnoticed as it will mean that they will be performing their work successfully.

"The fact is that the Organising Committee and the IOC do a great job in ensuring that the athletes have nothing else to concern themselves with except sport," said Ruggiero, a former contestant on the television show The Apprentice.

"It is kind of like with ice hockey; if you don't notice the referee, they are probably doing a good job!

"So it is great to be involved and great for me to have a chance to see the whole backstory that goes into the event."

There's an even longer interview on her involvement with the IOC here, talking about her rise to prominence: http://www.insidethe...eongchang-2018-

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