Kim Yu-na skates with kids to promote Pyeongchang
Olympic champion Kim Yu-na was unprepared for a skating session
with South African kids Tuesday, but says Pyeongchang is
”perfectly ready” to host the 2018 Winter Games.
The 2010 figure skating gold medalist had to borrow a pair of
skates before taking the ice at a rink in Durban to promote South
Pyeongchang is considered the favorite over the two other
candidates – Munich and Annecy, France. The winner will be decided
by the IOC on Wednesday.
The 20-year-old Kim looked unsteady on the unfamiliar skates as
she led youngsters on a few careful laps. She thinks the
Pyeongchang bid is on much firmer ground despite having lost
successive bids for the 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympics.
”I think our team has been preparing this bid for such a long
time and we are perfectly ready and we are completely confident,”
Kim said. ”Pyeongchang has been preparing for the bid for almost
A day before the crucial final presentations to the IOC and the
vote, the bid cities tried to divert attention from the
behind-the-scenes lobbying of IOC members at a hotel in Durban.
The Pyeongchang group sent Kim to a small rink to give
youngsters a few tips in front of a pack of photographers and
Munich, viewed as the top challenger to Pyeongchang, flew in
more than 100 winter sports fans to add some Bavarian color to
South Africa’s east coast city.
Bavaria Prime Minister Horst Seehofer led the delegation, with
German soccer great Franz Beckenbauer expected to arrive in South
Africa later Tuesday.
”The atmosphere on the way over was fantastic,” Seehofer said.
”There’s a real sense of anticipation now and we can’t wait for
the final announcement. Munich 2018 is a sports-driven bid and
that’s why I am here to offer my full support.”