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Volume 6 No. 216


Istanbul chose a "Bridge Together" slogan for its 2020 Olympic bid on Monday, while an IOC poll "indicated strong public support for the city's fifth attempt to secure" the Games, according to the AP. The survey results, announced by Turkish Youth and Sports Minister Suat Kilic, found that 83% of Istanbul residents and 76% of the national population "back the Olympic effort." The new bid slogan "highlights the city's unique geographic location straddling Europe and Asia." It is "inspired by Istanbul's Bosporus Bridge, which connects the city's European and Asian sides." The slogan and survey results "were made public on the second day" of the IOC evaluation commission's four-day assessment of Istanbul's bid. The team "has already visited bidders Tokyo and Madrid" (AP, 3/25). The AFP reported Turkish President Abdullah Gul said that "beside the proclaimed public support comes 'total' government support." Gul said, "The Turkish government, and Prime Minister (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan, personally, are totally committed to Istanbul's bid and to delivering everything we promised in our candidature. This is the time for Turkey. We are ready as never before" (AFP, 3/25).

Organizers of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics "are worried a lack of white powder could become a problem next February," according to Gennady Fyodorov of REUTERS. Unseasonably warm temperatures this winter in Sochi "have forced local organizers to store some 450,000 cubic meters of snow in the nearby Caucasus Mountains that surround this sub-tropical Black Sea resort." Rosa Khutor ski resort General Dir Sergei Bachin said, "We've prepared seven separate areas for snow storage high up in the mountains." He said the snow will be covered with a "special thermo seal," to protect it from melting during the summer. Bachin added, "We expect that about 140,000 (cubic meters) will melt away but we'll still have more than 300,000 cubic meters of snow available for next year." The storage will cost Bachin's company an extra $11M. Roza Khutor,  in Krasnaya Polyana, will host Alpine skiing, snowboarding and freestyle Olympic competition (REUTERS, 3/25).

Frankfurt-based specialist logistics company Conceptum Sport Logistics has agreed to a multi-year contract with Latvia's National Olympic Committee. The contract hands Conceptum responsibility for all transportation and logistics for the teams under Latvia's NOC (Conceptum). ... In India, around 100 former and current wrestlers gathered at the Ram Leela ground on Saturday and then marched to Jantar Mantar to garner support for wrestling, which is in danger of being axed from the 2020 Olympics (TNN, 3/24).