On July 4, 2007, the southern city of Russia – Sochi, located between the Caucasus Mountains and the Black Sea, was elected as the capital of the XXII Winter Olympic Games by members of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) at the 119th session in Guatemala.
There were seven cities applied for hosting the 2014 Winter Olympics by drawing lots: Sochi (Russian Federation), Salzburg (Austria), Haka (Spain), Almaty (Kazakhstan), Pyeongchang (Republic of Korea), Sofia (Bulgaria), and Borjomi (Georgia).
Then, based on the report of the working group, three of the seven cities were unanimously selected by the IOC Executive Committee as candidate cities at the meeting on June 22, 2006:
Sochi (Russian Federation)
Pyeongchang (Republic of Korea)
And already in Guatemala in the second round with 51 votes compared to 47 in Pyeongchang – Sochi was elected to host the 2014 Winter Olympics.
To achieve this positive result, a presentation of Sochi was organized right in the capital of Guatemala for the delegation of the International Olympic Committee, which came there to select the city capital of the Twenty-Second Winter Olympics. The author of the idea was the art director Boris Krasnov. As Sochi is in a subtropical climatic zone, it was necessary to show that there also can be winter and there will be no problems with holding sports competitions. The main idea was to establish a functioning Ice Rink on the territory of the “Russian House” in Guatemala, although the voting took place in a very hot period for the Central American country in early July.
This unusual project, both by design and technical implementation, appeared a week before the start of the 119th session of the IOC, across the Atlantic Ocean in Moscow. To implement it in such a short time, the JSA company was invited. Initially, the company had to install an ice rink platform and a roof canopy to keep out the sun and possible rain. But then, in the process, JSA became a full technical contractor for the entire project, especially in organizational terms. First, Arkady Ladokhin (technical director of Krasnov Design) and Alexander Strizhak flew to Guatemala for one day to agree on and approve a place for the Russian House, where a unique show presentation was supposed to be held. And then, a team of technicians from all services, together with the equipment: Layher structures, Prolyte roof system, freezing system, generators, light, sound, and screen, as well as ballet show props and hockey paraphernalia, flew urgently towards Central America.
All equipment was delivered by a special-purpose cargo plane. JSA specialists managed to fit the platform structure and roof into the complex landscape with trees in a small area of the local restaurant complex. A team of “icemen” led by Leonid Ledvich could quickly deploy the freezing system to create ice. Even due to the hot temperature, in the beginning, there were problems with the freezing of the ice cover. Thanks to the unexpected idea of the executive director of JSA – Yana Appazova (Gugunava), to use food ice from the hotel ice machines of the city, everything worked out, and the skating rink was ready.
The ice rink on the street and the entire technical infrastructure were ready to welcome artists, athletes, and officials. During the work of the “Russian House” as a presentation platform representing Sochi as a candidate for the capital of the 2014 Olympics, many different events took place. On a small ice rink in the courtyard of the restaurant complex, took place performances of famous figure skaters (including the Olympic champion Evgeny Plushenko), a mini-friendly match with the participation of famous hockey players (including the legendary Vyacheslav Fetisov), and colorful shows of the Moscow Ballet on Ice were held, as well as many other events.
Residents of the capital of Guatemala were delighted, as they saw that an ice skating rink could function in the open air in summer but under a canopy. This “Russian miracle” was reported and reported by local, Russian, and international media. This case also made a great impression on the representatives of the International Olympic Committee. Obviously, in the end, this unusual way of presenting Sochi, along with other advantages of the city, influenced the choice of the delegates in its favor. The victory was widely celebrated not only by those who did their job in Guatemala to achieve it but also by everyone involved in the general preparation of the event, as well as by the public and sports fans in Russia. During several days of its work, “Russian House” received many guests of various levels, including the President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Putin *.
“Show Master” Magazine / 3-2007 (50): JSA BUILD ICE RINK IN GUATEMALA (on russian)
“Show Master” Magazine / 4-2012 (71): “ICE HISTORY” OF RUSSIA FROM JSA COMPANY (on russian)
Particular thanks from JSA to Boris Krasnov, who was the main author and inspirer of this unique project. Thanks to his lively mind and positive energy and our business cooperation with him and his team (under the leadership of Arkady Ladokhin), we could bring this important and exciting event to life.
We also thank Leonid Ledvich for venturing into this project and making it possible to create an ice cover in the summer heat.
Many thanks to Sergey Shishkin and the entire JSA team, which were able to fly to Guatemala in a short time and carry out the necessary work, as well as to the JSA office for the operational management of this project.
And special thanks to Yana Appazova (Gugunava) for her ingenious idea to use food ice at the start of freezing the ice rink cover.
ВЕРСИЯ НА РУССКОМ ЯЗЫКЕ:
ВЫБОР СТОЛИЦЫ ЗИМНИХ ОЛИМПИЙСКИХ ИГР 2014
ЛЕДОВЫЙ КАТОК И ПРЕЗЕНТАЦИЯ СОЧИ В ГВАТЕМАЛЕ
Other pages with information about the history of the installation of the famous ice rinks with the participation of JSA:
(*) Photos of Vladimir Putin are posted here, just as a historical fact. JSA, represented by Alexander Strizhak, has its personal view of what is happening in Russia, both domestically and in its foreign policy, as well as events related to the subsequent preparation and holding of the Olympic Games in Sochi.
© All photos are the copyright of JSA Stage Company.