Moynihan Mulls Mood of NOCs; Qatari Sports Holiday; Pin Points

(ATR) British Olympic Association chairman says NOC colleagues excited for 2012 ... Qatar establishes "National Sports Day" ... Freestyle ski season underway ... All the latest from the world of Olympic pin trading.

Moynihan: London Poised for Great Games

The chairman of the British Olympic Association tells Around the Rings his NOC colleagues are very excited for the 2012 Games.

Colin Moynihan made the comments at IOC headquarters in Lausanne, where he attended a Tuesday meeting of the Executive Council of the Association of National Olympic Committees.

He added that the NOCs seem to be satisfied with preparations for the Games, now a little more than eight months away.

"We’ve had a report on London and Gunilla [Lindberg], who effectively represents the NOCs on ANOC Executive Council has said that all the issues the NOCs were raising have been answered satisfactorily," he told ATR.

"I think it’s going well. From the NOC perspective, we’re tracking and we’re looking good for the London Games."

Moynihan admits there remains a lot of work to do along the homestretch, but he’s confident London will stage "a great Games."

"All the facilities are there, test events have gone well, preparations has gone well," he said.

Qatar Launches Sports Holiday

Qatar will observe "National Sports Day" annually beginning next February.

The public holiday, announced by Qatar Olympic Committee president Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani, will celebrate sport and promote its benefits on the second Tuesday of every February.

"As Doha embarks on its bid for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we want to underline Qatar's commitment to sport and our desire to instill a strong sporting culture in our country's young population," said Al-Thani, also president of Doha 2020.

"Sport is central to Qatar's national vision and initiatives like the 'National Sports Day' will help young people in the country engage with sporting activities with positive values that will enable them to have a healthy and prosperous future."

Government departments and some private institutions will take observe the occasion by organizing sporting events.

Freestyle Ski Season Kicks Off

The FIS Freestyle Ski World Cup is underway this week on Copper Mountain in Colorado.

The event series takes on newfound importance this time around since the ski halfpipe and slopestyle disciplines were added to the Winter Olympic program earlier this year. Both will be included at Sochi 2014.

In the meantime, athletes will visit 25 different locations for a total of 76 competitions during this ski season alone.

World Cup action kicked off Wednesday with the men’s halfpipe qualification heats. The event at Copper Mountain includes a record number of entries with 39 women and 64 men in the mix.

New Logo for Pentathlon

Modern pentathlon’s 2012 World Cup Series has a new logo.

The competition will run from March to May in USA, Brazil, Hungary and Russia.

A final in Chengdu, China on May 26 and 27 will wrap up the Cup.

Pin Points…

…The fifth unofficial London 2012 pin traders meeting is set for Jan. 21 at Olympics megamall Westfield Stratford City. Full details are available from London Pins.

…Like the Facebook page of Rio 2016, and then join the quiz for a chance to win a pin.

…The most expensive Olympic pin listing on eBay is a cool $36,500 for a set of 2,800 pins and other Olympic memorabilia from Salt Lake City 2002.

...Other items up for sale on eBay include a collection of 500 pins from the 1980 Moscow Olympic pins for $3,500 and a set of 18 logo pins from Berlin 1936 to Beijing 2008 for $2,500.

Written by Ann Cantrelland Matthew Grayson

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