Czech NOC Elections; Bulgarian Medalist Pensions; Auctions Update

(ATR) Czech Olympic Committee elects new president ... Bulgaria approves lifetime pensions for Olympic medalists ... Denis Oswald retires from teaching ... Beckham torch up for grabs ... More inside this Olympic Newsdesk ...

Auctions Update

Rare written material from the 1896 Olympic Games, as well as extensive offerings from its precursors, the "Olympian Games" held in Athens from 1859 to 1889, highlight the Douramakos Olympic Memorabilia mail bid auction closing Dec. 8.

These include an 1896 complete Official Report in Greek and French (estimate of $3,500) and official rules programs for sports ranging from athletics and gymnastics to cycling, rowing and water polo ($1,200 to $1,800).

The 260-item mail bid auction also includes a Greek athlete’s suitcase filled with all of the shooting equipment he used in the 1924 Paris Olympics ($2,200) and rare IOC session badges from 1934 Athens ($1,800 to $2,500) and 1961 Athens ($900).

A rare 1972 Sapporo torch ($20,000) is one of a wide array of torches in the auction.

For those seeking a more recent collectible, the "Iconic London 2012 Opening Ceremony torch," which traveled down the Thames in a motorboat piloted by David Beckham, is being sold in the Official London 2012 auction. Rather than earmarking the torch for a museum, LOCOG designated this famous item as a post-Olympic money-maker.

Bidding closed at 3 p.m. ET todaywith the winning priceat 20,020.12 pounds ($32,092).

Oswald Retirement

IOC member Denis Oswald retired this week as a member of the law faculty of the University of Neuchâtel.

At his farewell reception Thursday, he delivered a lecture titled "The Olympic Games and the Law", a post on the IOC website says.

Czech Olympic Committee President

Jiří Kejval is the new president of the Czech Olympic Committee (COV). He replaces retiring president Milan Jirasek.

A statement from the COV calls Kejval a "successful athlete and entrepreneur," still regularly competing in rowing events.

Kejval was a member of the COV executive board for eight years, serving as vice president of marketing. The Czech House in London is his brainchild.

Petr Hrubec was reelected as the COV secretary general.

Also this week, Czech president Václav Klaus recently awarded state honors to double Olympic javelin champion Barbora Špotáková as well as football goalkeeper and Euro 1976 winner Ivo Viktor.

Medalist Pensions

The Bulgarian parliament approved lifetime pensions for the country’s 226 medalists.

Pensions will range from $660 a month to $2,600 a month.

Coaches of athletes are now also eligible to receive a pension if their subjects win medals.

Written by Karen Rosen and Ed Hula III.

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