Sochi 2014

The Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games were the first Winter Olympics for host nation Russia, having also held the Summer Games in Moscow in 1980, then as the Soviet Union.

Russia ruled the Games. The host nation dominated competition to top the medal tally with 13 golds and a total of 33 medals, ahead of Norway and Canada. Their 13 gold medals equalled their previous record, set (as the Soviet Union) in 1976.

The lead up to the Games was marred by several major controversies. Legislation was passed affecting the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Russia, causing global outcry against this discrimination and caused concerns for the safety and rights of LGBT athletes and spectators during the Games. In addition, terrorist attacks and threats by groups tied to the insurgency in the North Caucasus, caused major security concerns. Additionally, much was made of the cost of the Games. Over $US 50 billion, was said to have been spent, making them the most expensive Olympics in history. The larger-scale Summer Olympics in London cost less than $15 billion and the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing cost around $US 40 billion.

Despite these issues, the Games took place without incident, getting underway off the back of an impressive Torch Relay that lasted 123 days and measured over 64,000 kilometres - not including its trip into space! A total of 14,000 Torchbearers took part and the Olympic Flame journeyed to the Caucasus' tallest peak — Mount Elbrus, the bottom of Lake Baikal, and visited the North Pole and the International Space Station.

After a sensational Opening Ceremony full of Russian culture and heritage, there were 16 days of sport, with 88 nations in action. There were 98 events on the program (compared to 86 in Vancouver). The new events were: Ski Halfpipe (men and women), Ski Slopestyle (men and women), Snowboard Slopestyle (men and women), Ski Jumping (women), Figure Skating Team, Luge Team Relay and Biathlon Mixed Relay. The incorporation of mixed-gender, X-Games and youth-oriented events really made an impact in Sochi with athletes and spectators alike.

Sochi was the warmest Winter Olympics ever held. The city is a popular resort city located on the coast of the Black Sea in southern Russia with a population of 350,000. The Games were based in two separate areas - the coastal cluster in downtown Sochi featuring Sochi Olympic Park; and the mountain cluster. The two areas were approximately 40km apart, connected by two high speed roads and rail - making Sochi the most compact Winter Olympics ever. There was a coastal, mountain and endurance Athletes’ Village meaning they were situated close to competition and training venues.

In the mountain cluster was the Laura Cross Country and Biathlon Centre, the Rosa Khutor Alpine Centre, Extreme Park Snowboard Park and Freestyle Centre, the RusSki Gorki Ski Jumping Centre and the Sanki Sliding Centre.

Back down in Sochi Olympic Park, all venues were within in 10 minutes walk of each other. This included all five ice venues: Shayba” Arena and Bolshoy Ice Dome (Ice Hockey), Ice Cube Curling Centre, Adler Arena (Speed Skating) and Iceberg Skating Palace (Short Track and Figure Skating). The Fisht Olympic Stadium (Opening Ceremony), the Olympic Cauldron and Main Media Centre were also located here.

Australian Olympians At The Games

Flag Bearers

Olympian Name Ceremony
Alex 'Chumpy' Pullin Opening
David Morris Closing

Australian Medallists At The Games

Olympian Name Sport Medals
Torah Bright Snowboard
1
Lydia Lassila (Ierodiaconou) Freestyle Skiing
1
David Morris Freestyle Skiing
1

Australian Officials At The Games

Chefs

Official Name Position
Ian Chesterman Chef De Mission

Team Support Staff

Staff Member Name Position
Craig Phillips Team Chief Operating Officer
Geoff Lipshut
Peter Braun Medical Director
Michael Tancred Media Director
Danielle Woodward
Lauren Fitzgerald
Nicole Palmer
Ramone Cooper
Alana Rybicki
Nick Hunter
Paul Murray Athlete Services Manager
James Edwards Out-of-Village Manager
Alys Goldy
Clare Buckingham
Megan Hor
Ben Troy
Larissa Trease
Peter Caine
Jessie Cunningham
Peter Hogg
Ashley Merkur
Simon Ruse
Siobhan Crawshay
Julie Dunstan MPC Manager
Peter Henrys Media Liaison Officer
Damian Kelly Media Liaison Officer
Alice Wheeler Media Liaison Officer
Andrew Reid Website Manager (MPC)
Taya Conomos
Matthew Bartolo
Emily Groves
Luke Dufficy
Andrew Pattison
Annie Kearney
Kylie Peake
Caylie Saunders
Shane Redenbach

Sport Specific Support Staff

Staff Member Name Position
Nick Almoukov Coach
Hannah Campbell-Pegg
Dale Chapman Sliding Sports Video Analyst
Benjamin Alexander
Benjamin Boyd
Benjamin Bright Coach

Games Trivia

Motto

"Hot.Cool.Yours." 

The motto was intended to reflect the national character of Russia and the values of the Sochi 2014 brand, as well as Sochi 2014’s progressive and innovative approach to the organisation and staging of the Games. 

The word "Hot." reflects the intensity of sporting battle and the passion of the spectators, and it emphasises the location of the Games, the southern resort city of Sochi.

The word "Cool." references the timing of the Games, the fact that it is a Winter Games, as well as alluding to traditional perceptions of Russia as a country with a cold climate in the rest of the world.

The last word "Yours." symbolises personal involvement and shows that while the Games is a large-scale national project, everybody can share in the victories at the Games and the sense of pride.

Emblem

The Sochi 2014 emblem was the first ever to use of an internet domain address creating a ‘digital’ Olympic emblem to promote open dialogue between nations and fans. The emblem was hailed as an iconic symbol of contemporary Russia and a key milestone in the preparation of the Games.

Mascots

The Polar Bear, the Hare and the Leopard were the official mascots of the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games.

The competition to create the mascots ran in 2010. Over 24,000 entries were received and more than a million people followed the competition online. A panel of expert judges created a shortlist of 10 sets of mascots for the Olympics and a team of artists and animators made cartoon images of the suggestions. In February 2011 the mascots were presented to the nation and the winning mascot was announced on live TV after a national text message poll. The mascots were chosen to reflect a unique aspect of Russian culture, something that is close to the heart and instantly recognisable to millions of people around the world. Three mascots were chosen to represent the three places on the Olympic podium. For the first time in the history of the Olympic Movement, a whole nation took part in the selection of its Olympic mascot. 

What did they represent? The polar bear was brought up by Arctic explorers from a very early age. It was they who taught him skiing, speed skating and curling. But above all the polar bear enjoyed riding sports sleighs. He became a real bobsleigh pro. The Hare is the busiest creature in the winter forest - studying at the Forest Academy, helping her mum in the family restaurant and taking part in all manner of sporting events. The Leopard is a rescuer and mountain-climber who lives in the uppermost branches of a huge tree, on the highest peak of the snowy mountains in the Caucasus. He is an experienced snowboarder and has taught all his friends and neighbours to snowboard too.