O-STA

Winter Universiade Innsbruck/Seefeld 2005

Perfectly organized games - a great success for participants and spectators

Shortly before the end of the Winter Universiade Innsbruck/Seefeld, one thing is certain: The 22nd World University Winter Games was a tremendous success. Over 800 volunteers, all the participating sports federations and partners as well as the universities in Tyrol committed themselves with a lot of enthusiasm before and during the games to make the event a success. The reward of their efforts has been 69 perfectly organized medal events in ten winter sports disciplines. Not only has there been a record number of participants (1,500 athletes and 750 officials) but also a record number of participating countries, namely 50. And never before have TV stations broadcast more than 300 hours of a Universiade worldwide

During the Opening Ceremony on January 12, over 10,000 spectators saw a young, unconventional show in Innsbruck. The subsequent Ice Hockey match Austria vs. USA in the Innsbruck Olympic Ice Stadium was also completely sold out. The competitions in the Casino Arena Seefeld were also extremely popular and well-visited. For the first time in Seefeld various disciplines were organized with a stadium in the finish area. The innovative events such as Women´┐Ż's Ski-jumping, which was a medal event for the first time at an international event, and interesting night competitions, i.e. Snowboard Cross, Ski Cross and Big Air, had a full impact. Up to now a total of more than 60,000 spectators, especially the young fans, were delighted by the friendly and easy-going atmosphere and the achievements of the athletes.

The host country Austria is leading the medal count right now with 20 medals (9 gold, 8 silver, 3 bronze as of January 21, 2005, 10 a.m.). Russia, Japan, the Ukraine and Korea are also in the top five.

Especially during the Speed Skating events the high level of performance by the student-athletes became very obvious. The three WU records and two track records speak for themselves. The same thing is true for the spectacular Short Track competitions, which will take place until tomorrow and where two world champions (men and women) and other top skaters will make for sensational races.

In addition to the competitions still to take place in Seefeld, public interest is now focused on the WU 2005 Ice Hockey tournament. The very promising semi-final games Russia vs. Finland (Olympic Ice Stadium, 5 p.m.) and Austria vs. Czech Republic (Olympic Ice Stadium, 8 p.m.) have triggered a real run for tickets, which are available at the ticket counters of the Olympia World Innsbruck. Therefore, the Organising Committee is expecting a full house and a brilliant atmosphere.

Tomorrow, Saturday, the bronze medal game will take place at 1 p.m. and the gold medal game at 5 p.m. The Closing Ceremony of the WU 2005 will take place immediately after the last Ice Hockey match.

Bernd Obermayr

Press Officer

ISOC 2005 - Organising Committee of the

Winter Universiade Innsbruck/Seefeld 2005

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phone: +43 (0) 512 5360 - 2005

mobile: +43 664 8455 216

mail: bernd.obermayr@isoc2005.at

www.universiade-innsbruck.org