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Thread: 2024 Paris Olympics

  1. #1
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    2024 Paris Olympics

    If this forum survives another decade, this thread will grow.

    USOC taps Boston as 2024 bid city
    Updated: January 9, 2015, 3:06 AM ET
    Associated Press

    Boston Will Be U.S. Bid City For 2024 Olympics's Gordon Edes breaks down the U.S. Olympic leaders choosing Boston to be their bid city for the 2024 Summer Olympics.

    DENVER -- The Olympic rings flying over Fenway Park? Could happen.

    U.S. Olympic leaders surprisingly cast their future with Boston on Thursday, hoping a compact, college-centric bid with a touching story to tell will overshadow the city's well-organized protest group and convince international voters to bring the Summer Games to America after a 28-year gap.

    Not only does Boston not need the Olympic Games, it more importantly can't afford them, writes Gordon Edes. Story

    During a daylong meeting at the Denver airport, U.S. Olympic Committee board members chose Boston, with its promise of frugality, reusable venues and inspiration after its comeback from the marathon bombings, over Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington for its 2024 bid.

    "Today's selection by the USOC is the beginning of an incredible opportunity for Boston," said the city's bid chairman, John Fish, who will be part of a celebratory news conference Friday with the USOC leadership.

    Boston joins Rome as the only other city that has officially decided to bid. Germany will submit either Hamburg or Berlin, with France and Hungary among those also considering bids. The International Olympic Committee will award the Games in 2017.

    America's previous two attempts to land the Games resulted in embarrassments -- fourth-place finishes for New York (2012) and Chicago ('16).

    The selection of one of the country's most history-steeped cities comes as something of a shock to insiders, who viewed two-time host Los Angeles as the safest choice and San Francisco as the sexiest. But a compact bid highlighted by a frugal spending plan -- along with Boston's energetic leadership team led by Fish, the construction magnate -- outweighed doubts that surfaced because of the city's organized protest group and less-than-perfect history in delivering big projects such as the Big Dig.

    JTB/UIG/Getty Images
    USOC board members chose Boston over Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington during a daylong meeting at the Denver airport Thursday, capping campaigns spanning more than a year.

    Boston Mayor Marty Walsh, who attended the bid presentations last month, said it was "an exceptional honor" to be chosen.

    "This selection is in recognition of our city's talent, diversity and global leadership," the first-term mayor said. "Our goal is to host an Olympic and Paralympic Games that are innovative, walkable and hospitable to all. Boston hopes to welcome the world's greatest athletes to one of the world's great cities."

    Fenway Park and its Green Monster would be part of the plan. The Boston Marathon course probably wouldn't (too downhill). But chances are there would be subtle references to the 2013 bombings near the finish line that killed three people -- a touching way to show how a city can pull together.

    "The city has taught all of us what it means to be Boston Strong," the White House said in a statement. "The President and First Lady couldn't be prouder of this accomplishment and of all of our nation's athletes, and strongly support the effort to bring the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games to the United States."

    Seeking to become the first American host for the Summer Games since Atlanta in 1996, Boston focused on its ability to use the more than 100 universities throughout the area to house events and athletes.

    It touted a walkable, technology-based Olympics with an operating budget of less than $5 billion (considered frugal by Olympic standards). It said as many as 70 percent of its venues would not stand permanently, and a new main stadium might be shrunk to someday host a soccer team. Colleges might pay for many of the venues, then take them over after the Games.

    "There's a lot of pre-existing infrastructure that's available" because of the colleges, USA Gymnastics president Steve Penny said. "That's one of the reasons Boston can work at a really high level."

    Just as quickly as the celebratory statements were coming out, the protest group, No Boston Olympics, was revving up its own act, stressing that the state's priorities should include safe communities, quality education and responsible environmental policies.

    "An Olympics ... threatens to divert resources and attention away from these challenges -- all for a chance to host an event that economists say does not leave local economies better off," the group said.

    No Boston Olympics was the only protest group picketing outside the USOC meeting where the cities made their presentations last month, but USOC chairman Larry Probst was among those who said at the time that it was simply part of the bid business.

    "Any time you're going to do something this big, there's going to be pockets of resistance," Penny said. "It doesn't matter which city is chosen."

    Gov. Charlie Baker, who was sworn in earlier Thursday, said he would work to keep costs down and deliver on the promise of a privately funded Olympics.

    "The history of the Olympics is that it always costs taxpayers," said Chris Dempsey, the protest group's co-chair. "It's especially concerning when they haven't released the bid. How are we supposed to take them at their word when we can't see the details?"

    One task the USOC has to start on immediately is introducing Boston to the world. Though well-known for the marathon, it isn't a huge dot on the worldwide map. Often, however, that can work in a city's favor, as it gets to define itself rather than come in with tons of pre-existing notions.

    Just as important will be the USOC's relationship with the rest of the world. It was not good six years ago, when Chicago took the hit with its last-place finish in a contest won by Rio de Janeiro. Recently, IOC president Thomas Bach outlined a new agenda that called for a more streamlined bidding process and future Olympics that didn't cost as much and didn't leave as many white elephants behind.

    With a plan centering on colleges, compactness and frugality, Boston convinced the USOC it understood the vision.

    Copyright 2015 by The Associated Press
    Gene Ching
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  2. #2
    I have relatives and friends living in Japan.

    They invited me over for 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

    I might go.

    Anyone going?

  3. #3
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    Jan 1970
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    You should definitely go SPJ

    I had the opportunity to go to the LA Olympics in '84 but I passed. I've always regretted that.

    When you go, post it here: 2020 Olympics
    Gene Ching
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  4. #4
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    Of course by 2024...

    ...cuz it ain't happening in 2020.

    There's a mp3 file but I think this is all written out below.

    Wushu Hopes to Go to Olympics by 2024
    2015-11-23 07:00:04 Web Editor: Mao

    Students of a kungfu school show kungfu during the welcoming ceremony of the 10th Zhengzhou International Shaolin Wushu Festival in Dengfeng, central China's Henan province, Oct 19, 2014. [Photo: Xinhua]

    Wushu, often called "Kung Fu", pits fighters against one another in hand-to-hand combat or intricate acrobatics focusing on flair and weapon work.

    Now, the sport is hoping to go a step further by following other martial arts, like Japan's judo and Korea's taekwondo, by becoming an Olympic sport.

    CRI's Niu Honglin reports.

    This year's World Wushu Championships in Jakarta features a record number of 600 athletes and attracted thousands of viewers.

    Many of those rising to the medal dais come from emerging Wushu nations. Russian Wushu athlete and former gold medalist Daria Tarassova believes that the sport should be in the Olympics.

    "I believe, and I'm sure that Wushu now is well known all over the world so it should be in the Olympics soon."

    The efforts of the International Wushu Federation suffered a setback when Wushu was dropped from a shortlist of sports being considered for the Tokyo 2020 Games.
    However, the organization has not been put off.

    Vice President of the International Wushu Federation Anthony Goh is confident of inclusion in next Olympic Games.

    "I think Wushu is just visually spectacular and I think that people who have never seen it for the first time. They are totally impressed and say 'wow, I didn't think it looked so good'."

    Wushu has come a long way since a rising martial artist named Jet Li demonstrated the sport at the White House in 1974.

    It has transformed from a centuries-old, exclusively Chinese combat discipline into a professional sport with a world federation and global participation.

    U.S. national team coach and long-time Wushu fighter Mario Martinez says the sport is quite popular in the country.

    "Our hope is really for Wushu to ultimately develop into an Olympic sport. We believe that it's already there."

    Martinez adds that many US athletes on his squad worked full time to fund their travel for Wushu tournaments abroad.

    He is still confident Wushu will be accepted by the Olympics.

    "It's developed in a format that's perfect for competition, it has fighting, it has weapons, it has all of the fast moving action of all martial arts condensed into one."

    For CRI, I'm Niu Honglin.
    Gene Ching
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  5. #5
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    2024 Paris, 2028 Los Angeles

    Adding the locations to the titles now.

    It’s official: LA gets 2028 Olympics, Paris gets 2024
    By Nick ZaccardiSep 13, 2017, 1:48 PM EDT

    By a show of hands, the IOC confirmed that Paris will host the 2024 Olympics, and Los Angeles will get the 2028 Olympics.

    As expected, IOC members approved an agreement made among the two cities and IOC leaders earlier this summer to make the historic double award.

    Before that, today’s meeting in Lima, Peru, was scheduled to be a vote between Paris and LA for the 2024 Games only. Recognizing the two strong bids, IOC leaders pushed this spring and summer to award Olympics and Paralympics to both cities this year.

    LA and Paris gave 25-minute presentations Wednesday with speeches and videos to IOC members before the show of hands.

    The LA 2028 speakers included Olympic champions Allyson Felix, Janet Evans and Angela Ruggiero. Michael Johnson, who turned 50 on Wednesday, was also in attendance.

    USOC chairman Larry Probst spoke of perseverance.

    The U.S. lost in bidding for 2012 (New York City) and 2016 (Chicago). Its original 2024 bid city, Boston, dropped out two years ago after lack of local support.

    For LA, it started with a January 2013 letter from former mayor Antonio Villaraigosa to the USOC expressing interest in bidding for the 2024 Olympics. It was signed by Magic Johnson and Tom Hanks.

    LA lost to Boston in the initial competition to be the U.S. host city before taking over quickly after Boston bowed out. It navigated a crowded original 2024 international bid race that saw Rome, Hamburg and Budapest all drop out.

    “It has been a formidable journey to get here, but we never gave up hope,” Probst said in his speech Wednesday.

    Paris’ presentation included a video titled, “24 words for Paris 2024” that featured Olympic judo champion Teddy Riner and Neymar, the Brazilian soccer gold medalist who last month transferred from FC Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain.

    MORE: Paris Olympic bid plan includes Eiffel Tower area

    Additionally, French president Emmanuel Macron spoke in a pre-recorded video.

    “I wanted to re-emphasize here the full commitment of a whole country behind these Games,” Macron said. “In our world today, defending the values of Olympism also means working for greater balance, more multilateralism and towards a more inclusive, more sustainable society.”

    The last time two Olympic hosts were determined at once was in 1921, when the 1924 Paris and 1928 Amsterdam Games were awarded, according to LA and Paris will join London as the only cities to host the Olympics three times.

    The U.S. will host its first Olympics since 2002 (and first Summer Games since 1996). Paris will host for the first time since 1924.

    The U.S. ends its longest drought between hosting an Olympics since the 28-year gap between 1932 and 1960. It failed in bids for 2012 (New York City) and 2016 (Chicago).

    Paris was a finalist for 1992, 2008 and 2012.
    2028 Olympics

    2024 Olympics

    2020, 2016, 2008, 1936 & Special Olympics
    Gene Ching
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  6. #6
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    Karate rejected for Paris 2024 Olympics

    ‘It’s not just doing the worm’: breakdancing could become Olympic sport in 2024
    • IOC to make decision for Paris 2024 by December 2020
    • Karate, squash, billiard sports and chess rejected
    Press Association

    Thu 21 Feb 2019 07.36 EST Last modified on Thu 21 Feb 2019 11.31 EST

    The head of the Paris 2024 organising committee said breakdancing would make the Olympics ‘more urban’ and ‘more artistic’. Photograph: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP/Getty Images

    Breakdancing pioneer Richard “Crazy Legs” Colon, who as leader of the US hip-hop group Rock Steady Crew is widely credited with turning the craze into a global phenomenon, has hailed its prospective inclusion in the Olympic Games.

    Breakdancing has been confirmed as one of four sports, along with surfing, climbing and skateboarding, which will be put forward to the International Olympic Committee for inclusion in the Paris 2024 Games.

    It follows the successful introduction of breakdancing at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires last year, for which Colon, a 53-year-old from The Bronx in New York, was invited to be a part of the judging panel.

    Colon said: “This is about two worlds coming together. They each have their own history and I think that we can carefully do this in a manner that is respectful to the essence of both. The dance represents many people who come from struggle and have nothing, and now that has translated into an opportunity to see the world, to compete and, most importantly, to build bridges between cultures and break down stereotypes.”

    Colon was a founding member of the Rock Steady Crew in 1977 and helped it develop from what was initially a New York sub-culture into a style which was recognised and copied around the world.

    The group’s major UK hit, ‘(Hey You) The Rocksteady Crew’ reached number six in the charts in October 1983.

    “I was brought in as one of the judges in Argentina and as you are watching the kids getting their medals, you kind of start to feel a little bit emotional,” added Colon.

    Paco Boxy, director of the British Breaking League which organises competitions across the UK,added: “I think it’s fantastic news, not only for the young generation but also for the credibility of breakdancing to be classed as a sport.

    “A lot of people will look at breakdancing as just spinning on your head or doing the worm, but the people that I know train like athletes. They go to the gym swimming, train every day. It will always be a dance first and foremost, but it has turned into a sport.

    The selection of the four sports by the Paris organising committee brings bad news for squash and karate, the latter of which will make its Olympic debut in Tokyo next year.

    A statement from World Karate Federation president Antonio Espinos read: “Our sport has grown exponentially over the last years and we still haven’t had the chance to prove our value as an Olympic sport since we will be making our debut as an Olympic discipline in Tokyo 2020.

    “Over the last months we have worked relentlessly, together with the French Federation, to achieve our goal of being included in Paris 2024. We believed that we had met all the requirements and that we had the perfect conditions to be added to the sports programme. However, we have learned today that our dream will not be coming true.”

    In a joint statement, the World Squash Federation and PSA World Tour said: “The proposed list of four sports only, of which three sports are already confirmed by the IOC on the Tokyo 2020 Olympic programme, leads to a belief that Paris 2024 and the IOC favoured sports already in the Olympic programme, leaving practically no opportunity for other sports.

    “The unity that our sport enjoys globally is exceptional and is getting stronger by the day. WSF and PSA are supported by the entire squash community and, with our athletes at the forefront, have run a strong campaign that respected the timeline and the criteria set by Paris 2024 and the IOC.”
    Gung Fu & Breakdancing
    2024 Paris Olympics
    Gene Ching
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  7. #7
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    Lightsaber duelling is an officially recognized competitive sport

    In France, the Force is strong with lightsaber dueling
    February 18, 2019

    In this Sunday, Feb. 10, 2019, photo, competitors battle during a national lightsaber tournament in Beaumont-sur-Oise, north of Paris. In France, it is easier than ever now to act out "Star Wars" fantasies. The fencing federation has officially recognized lightsaber dueling as a competitive sport. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

    BEAUMONT-SUR-OISE, France (AP) — Master Yoda, dust off his French, he must.

    It’s now easier than ever in France to act out “Star Wars” fantasies, because its fencing federation has borrowed from a galaxy far, far away and officially recognized lightsaber dueling as a competitive sport, granting the iconic weapon from George Lucas’ saga the same status as the foil, epee and sabre, the traditional blades used at the Olympics.

    Of course, the LED-lit, rigid polycarbonate lightsaber replicas can’t slice a Sith lord in half. But they look and, with the more expensive sabers equipped with a chip in their hilt that emits a throaty electric rumble, even sound remarkably like the silver screen blades that Yoda and other characters wield in the blockbuster movies .

    Plenty realistic, at least, for duelists to work up an impressive sweat slashing, feinting and stabbing in organized, 3-minute bouts. The physicality of lightsaber combat is part of why the French Fencing Federation threw its support behind the sport and is now equipping fencing clubs with lightsabers and training would-be lightsaber instructors. Like virtuous Jedi knights, the French federation sees itself as combatting a Dark Side: The sedentary habits of 21st-century life that are sickening ever-growing numbers of adults and kids .

    “With young people today, it’s a real public health issue. They don’t do any sport and only exercise with their thumbs,” says Serge Aubailly, the federation secretary general. “It’s becoming difficult to (persuade them to) do a sport that has no connection with getting out of the sofa and playing with one’s thumbs. That is why we are trying to create a bond between our discipline and modern technologies, so participating in a sport feels natural.”

    Embedded video

    John Leicester

    Lightsaber dueling: Some basic rules.

    4:31 AM - Feb 18, 2019
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    VIDEO: How-to guide to lightsaber dueling.
    In the past, the likes of Zorro, Robin Hood and The Three Musketeers helped lure new practitioners to fencing. Now, joining and even supplanting them are Luke Skywalker , Obi-Wan Kenobi and Darth Vader.

    “Cape and sword movies have always had a big impact on our federation and its growth,” Aubailly says. ”Lightsaber films have the same impact . Young people want to give it a try.”

    And the young at heart.

    Police officer Philippe Bondi, 49, practiced fencing for 20 years before switching to lightsaber. When a club started offering classes in Metz, the town in eastern France where he is stationed for the gendarmerie, Bondi says he was immediately drawn by the prospect of living out the love he’s had for the “Star Wars” universe since he saw the first film at age 7, on its release in 1977 .

    He fights in the same wire-mesh face mask he used for fencing. He spent about 350 euros ($400) on his protective body armor (sturdy gloves, chest, shoulder and shin pads) and on his federation-approved lightsaber, opting for luminous green “because it’s the Jedi colors, and Yoda is my master.”

    “I had to be on the good side, given that my job is upholding the law,” he said.

    Bondi awoke well before dawn to make the four-hour drive from Metz to a national lightsaber tournament outside Paris this month that drew 34 competitors. It showcased how far the sport has come in a couple of years but also that it’s still light years from becoming mainstream.
    Embedded video

    John Leicester

    In France, the Force is strong with lightsaber dueling

    4:29 AM - Feb 18, 2019
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    PHOTOS: The spectacle of lightsaber dueling.
    The crowd was small and a technical glitch prevented the duelers’ photos, combat names and scores from being displayed on a big screen, making bouts tough to follow. But the illuminated swooshes of colored blades looked spectacular in the darkened hall. Fan cosplay as “Star Wars” characters added levity, authenticity and a tickle of bizarre to the proceedings, especially the incongruous sight of Darth Vader buying a ham sandwich and a bag of potato chips at the cafeteria during a break.

    In building their sport from the ground up, French organizers produced competition rules intended to make lightsaber dueling both competitive and easy on the eyes.

    “We wanted it to be safe, we wanted it to be umpired and, most of all, we wanted it to produce something visual that looks like the movies, because that is what people expect,” said Michel Ortiz, the tournament organizer.

    This isn't the car you're looking for: 'Star Wars' fans in cosplay had a ball at the tournament.

    Combatants fight inside a circle marked in tape on the floor. Strikes to the head or body are worth 5 points; to the arms or legs, 3 points; on hands, 1 point. The first to 15 points wins or, if they don’t get there quickly, the high scorer after 3 minutes. If both fighters reach 10 points, the bout enters “sudden death,” where the first to land a head- or body-blow wins, a rule to encourage enterprising fighters.

    Blows only count if the fighters first point the tip of their saber behind them. That rule prevents the viper-like, tip-first quick forward strikes seen in fencing. Instead, the rule encourages swishier blows that are easier for audiences to see and enjoy, and which are more evocative of the duels in “Star Wars.” Of those, the battle between Obi-Wan and Darth Maul in “The Phantom Menace” that ends badly for the Sith despite his double-bladed lightsaber is particularly appreciated by aficionados for its swordplay.

    Still nascent, counting its paid-up practitioners in France in the hundreds, not thousands, lightsaber dueling has no hope of a place in the Paris Olympics in 2024.

    But to hear the thwack of blades and see them cut shapes through the air is to want to give the sport a try.

    Or, as Yoda would say: “Try not. Do! Or do not. There is no try.”
    Jedi Academies
    Paris Olympics
    Gene Ching
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  8. #8
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    Breakdancing provisionally approved

    Breakdancing provisionally approved as an Olympic sport in 2024 ... no, seriously
    Chris Cwik Yahoo Sports Jun 25, 2019, 12:16 PM

    Breakdancing is coming to the Olympics. (AP)

    Dust off your old breakdancing mats now because your country might need you. Breakdancing has been provisionally approved for the 2024 Olympics, according to Ben Fischer of the Sports Business Journal.

    There were rumblings this was going to happen. In March, the International Olympics Committee recommended breakdancing — along with a couple other sports — for consideration at the 2024 games.

    Fischer cleared up why other sports — such as lacrosse or cricket — weren’t in the conversation for the Olympics. The committee believes breakdancing will bring in a younger audience.

    Ben Fischer

    · Jun 25, 2019
    News: IOC provisionally approves breakdancing as a new medal event at 2024 Paris Olympics, a first in the Games. Three other sports also approved: skateboarding, sport climbing and surfing. Those are also new, but will debut next year in Tokyo.

    Ben Fischer

    Some context on what's driving Olympics' thinking on new sports: New additions need to be 1.) youth-oriented 2.) small footprint (they don't want the total no. of athletes to grow much, so team sports are v. hard) and 3.) have broad appeal, interest across many countries

    9:54 AM - Jun 25, 2019
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    Before you write off breakdancing as a sport, consider some of the other events in the Olympics. Many require skill, athleticism and hours of practice to reach perfection.

    If breakdancing can do that and provide viewers with entertaining and moving performances, is it really any different than some of the events millions of people tune in to the Olympics to watch now?


    Chris Cwik is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter! Follow @Chris_Cwik
    I would watch Olympic Breakdancing competition.

    Gung Fu & Breakdancing
    2024 Paris Olympics
    Gene Ching
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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  9. #9
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    Note the date of this story...'s been picked up by some MMA news sites. Well played JiuJitsu Times.

    Jiu-Jitsu Officially Announced As An Event For The 2024 Olympics
    By Emil Fischer -April 1, 2021

    History was made today as the International Olympic Committee announced the inclusion of jiu-jitsu in the 2024 Olympics.

    For years there has been much debate on which ruleset the Olympics would use should they ever include the gentle art and who would be the director of the event to ensure the sport’s smooth transition to an Olympic sport.

    Carlos Gracie Jr., the grandson of Gracie Jiu-Jitsu founder Carlos Gracie; head honcho of the IBJJF and Gracie Barra will be overseeing the sport’s inclusion.

    “We went to great lengths to ensure that our sport would be treated with the respect it deserves. We will be using the current IBJJF no-gi rules with some minor modifications. For starters, open hand slaps will be allowed to simulate reality, as well as low kicks from the standing position. It’ll look a lot like the style of jiu-jitsu that my grandfather promoted all of his life.”

    The sport will look similar Combat Jiu-Jitsu with the exception of the low kicks.

    There was some concern with the nationalism of BJJ, namely that many Brazilians take issue with the term “American Jiu-Jitsu” seeing as the style was brought to America by Brazilians. To address this, Carlos Gracie Jr. had some stipulations.

    “Because we wanted to separate our sport in the Olympics from Judo, we are specifying it as Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu or Gracie Jiu-Jitsu. As part of the opening ceremony for the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu event will include a collective bow to a portrait of Helio Gracie and Carlos Gracie Sr. We will also not be allowing teams that identify their style as American Jiu-Jitsu to participate because they are a threat to the shield of jiu-jitsu.”

    Jiu-Jitsu Times is excited to see the growth of our sport and its expansion to the Olympics!
    Below is the list on the Official Paris Olympics site:
    Gene Ching
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  10. #10
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    Teddy Riner

    Olympics-Judo-Riner shines even as Japan judokas win record gold

    By Tetsushi Kajimoto
    Posted on August 7, 2021

    TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese judokas achieved a record gold medal rush for the host country at the Tokyo Games, but it was France’s Teddy Riner who stole the show at the home of judo in the end.

    Of the 14 weight categories for the men and women, Japan won nine golds, a silver and a bronze in the individual contests in Tokyo – a record haul since judo became an Olympic event for men in 1964 and for women in 1992.

    However, the feeling of exaltation among Japanese judokas quickly faded after they suffered a shock loss against Riner-led France 1-4 in the mixed team event on the final day of the judo contest.

    “This is the reality in the world. The world of judo is evolving fast,” Kosei Inoue, the head coach of the Japanese judo national team, told reporters.

    “I’m really frustrated as we ended up in the second place and couldn’t live up to expectations, although I’m the happiest man on earth to have worked with such wonderful athletes.”

    Japanese judokas have a big job to do if they want to outperform their Tokyo Games results at the Paris 2024, he added.

    Confronting Japan will likely be French judokas led by Riner, who plans to return to the mat for his fourth Games in his home country.

    The 32-year-old French heavyweight legend had to settle for the bronze medal after failing to win a third consecutive Olympic gold in the men’s +100kg individual contest against Tamerlan Bashaev of the Russian Olympic Committee.

    A win at Tokyo’s Budokan, the arena built to host judo’s debut at the 1964 Games, would have matched the record held by Japanese great judoka Tadahiro Nomura.

    Still, the French win in the team event helped bring Riner a tally of three golds and two bronze medals from his Olympics appearances. Riner said he was happy to win both bronze for the individual and gold for the team event.

    “It’s my third Olympic gold medal, my fifth medal at an Olympics. I think this is very, very… important to win here in the country of judo during the Olympic Games in Tokyo at the Budokan. It’s just amazing,” Riner told reporters.

    “This is a dream, we win the final (against the) Japanese team. Wow.”

    (Reporting by Tetsushi Kajimoto; Editing by Lincoln Feast)
    Gene Ching
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  11. #11
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    Olympic Phryge and Paralympic Phryge

    The Paris 2024 Olympic mascots are ... hats. Here's why
    November 15, 2022 12:09 PM ET

    The Paris 2024 Olympics and Paralympics unveiled their mascots, two cartoonish Phrygian caps.
    Paris 2024

    It's a symbol of revolution and freedom, of striving. And it's a hat. It's an icon seen over centuries, from the Notre Dame Cathedral to the Eiffel Tower. And yes, it's still a hat.

    More specifically, it's a Phrygian cap, the red bonnet famously worn by Marianne, the artistic personification of the free French republic. The Paris 2024 Olympics and Paralympics unveiled the hat as their official mascots this week, showing off cartoonish images that are meeting with wide-ranging reactions.

    "It's the French spirit that came to us, this French spirit that makes us a slightly out-of-the-ordinary nation," explained Paris 2024 Brand Director Julie Matikhine, in a video celebrating the mascots' unveiling.

    As happens when a national spirit combines with the Olympic spirit, the mascots are also being packaged into nearly 10,000 types of products, from plush toys to hoodies, electronics and luggage.

    These mascots are not like the others

    The mascots are named the Phryges — Olympic Phryge and Paralympic Phryge. And before we get into the responses to them, we should note that the Paris 2024 mascots do something important, even revolutionary: Apart from the Paralympic Phryge having a racing blade where its counterpart has a leg, they are nearly identical.

    That's a wide departure from previous Games, where the Olympic and Paralympic mascots have often had different colors and designs, or were represented by different species altogether. At Rio 2016, for instance, one mascot was a cat-like chimera, while the other was a very cute tree.

    For Paris 2024, it's a way to emphasize that despite differing appearances and events, athletes in the Olympics and Paralympics are just that: athletes.

    "They've been brought together and it's the same world, the same family," said Joachim Roncin, who led the mascot design effort.

    Among the reactions: are these lady parts?

    It's not uncommon for Olympic mascots to provoke head-scratching and bemusement. Some of the most successful examples have been safe crowd-pleasers — see Beijing's recent deployment of the panda, its hard-working ambassador.

    But when the French conceptualize something, "safe" and "crowd-pleasing" often don't carry the same weight they might elsewhere.

    As they sought to express the French spirit, Matikhine said, the Phrygian cap was the "best way that we found to illustrate this, the most distinctive way anyway."

    Responses to the Paris 2024 video tweet revealing the Phryges ranged from "Olympic Crynge" to questions about whether the coq, the well-known French rooster, was for some reason unavailable.

    Then there are the comparisons. One commenter said the red caps look like Smurf hats gone amok. And several others said the elongated triangular shape is like a cartoon of female body parts brought to life.

    The Phryges have backstories

    Simple though they might appear, these mascots are not under-conceptualized, although Paris organizers seem undecided about their gender, sometimes referring to them as "it" and other times as "she."

    The figure of the French Republic depicted as a dark-haired woman in a red cap, circa 1795. The Phrygian-style cap, or bonnet rouge, was worn by the partisans during the French Revolution and was adopted as a Republican symbol.
    Henry Guttmann Collection/Getty Images

    Describing the Olympic Phryge, Matikhine said:

    "It's a fine tactician, it's a mascot who is extremely focused, who thinks everything through before it acts. It analyses the terrain, the situation. It never launches into anything without calculating the risks. It is also very French, with a great charm, and with a sensitivity that it tries in vain to hide."

    Of the Paralympic Phryge, she said:

    "In a way it's the twin of the Olympic Phryge. It is a real party animal, extremely extroverted, it is a people person, it brings the party and its charisma with it wherever it goes, rallying everyone around it, spontaneously and naturally."

    Origin stories and appearances aside, organizers hope the mascots connect with fans and children and inspire the French public to embrace sports even more than they currently do. And, they add, the mascots' dolls and other items are already on sale, more than 600 days before the Paris Summer Games begin.
    The hat is cool. These don't quite look like the hats to me...
    Gene Ching
    Author of Shaolin Trips
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