Rohit's nukkad

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Olympic torch relay - 10 interesting facts

With 2008 Summer Olympics round the corner and the Olympic torch relay making rounds in a number of countries before reaching the final destination - Beijing. It would be nice to look at some interesting facts related with the Olympic torch

1. The origins of lighting the torch at the ancient city of Olympia in Greece and running it through different countries was invented by the organizers of the 1936 Berlin Olympics. It was used by the Nazi leadership as a propaganda platform.

2. In 1956 the equestrian events were held in Stockholm while the rest of the events in Melbourne. The torch relay to Stockholm had all the torch bearers traveling on horseback.

3. 1956 seems to be an interest for Olympic torch stories. The most interesting one was for the Melbourne torch relay. The Mayor of Sydney was supposed to receive the torch from cross-country champion Harry Dillon but couple of students prime among them Barry Larkin's staged a hoax by pretending to be the athlete by carrying a fake torch made out of a burning part of underpants and a plum pudding can on the end of the chair leg and handed over the fake torch to the Mayor. Before anyone can realize the prank Barry disappeared.

4. In 2000 Sydney Olympics the torch was carried under water by drivers near the Great Barrier Reef using a special enclosure.

5. In 2004 Athens Olympics the torch traveled all over the world and for the first time visiting all previous held Olympics cities.

6. The origin of the torch for both Summer and Winter Olympics begins in Olympia with Athens (Greece) as the next stop, before the torch makes its route around the world before reaching the host nation.

7. There are plans to carry 2008 Olympic torch on top of Mount Everest.

8. Using the torch to light the fire at the central stadium marks the beginning of the games. One of the most spectacular lighting of the fire was during 1992 Barcelona Olympics where archer Antonio Rebollo shot a burning arrow over the cauldron from a platform at the opposite end of the stadium.

9. During the 1976 Montreal Olympics a rainstorm doused the flame after the games had opened, an official re-lit using his cigarette lighter. The organizers quickly dozed of the flame and re-lit using the backup of the original flame.

10. The 2008 Olympic torch relay is expected to cover the maximum distance and most number of athletes to carry the torch. However with all the controversy surrounding the flame this might be the last Olympic torch relays.


  • What about Torch carried through India?

    => seems like more mediapersons than sports were interested; as usual a free marketting moment!

    By Anonymous Aditya Ayre, at 4:25 AM, April 20, 2008  

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