COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - The United States Olympic Committee will join the rest of the world in celebrating the one year countdown to the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia with a week full of activities beginning Feb. 4. Various promotions and activities will celebrate Team USA's journey to Sochi while sharing the excitement and spirit of the Olympic Winter Games with fans across the country.
"The Road to Sochi is about sharing the inspirational stories of our athletes with the American public ahead of the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games," said Lisa Baird, USOC chief marketing officer. "Thanks to the tremendous Olympic efforts of NBCUniversal and other partners in the Road to Sochi program, like Hilton HHonors, Americans will get to know the 2014 U.S. Olympians and Paralympians better than ever before in the 12 months leading up to the Sochi Games."
The Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games, which run from Feb. 6-23, will feature 15 disciplines of seven sports, as recognized by the International Olympic Committee, for a total of 98 medal events, including 12 new events - biathlon mixed relay, figure skating team event, freestyle skiing halfpipe and slopestyle competitions, luge team relay, women's ski jumping, and snowboard slopestyle and parallel slalom events.
Then, just two weeks after the end of the Olympic Games, the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games will take place March 7-16. The Games will feature seven disciplines of five sports, as recognized by the International Paralympic Committee, for a total of 72 medal events, including men's and women's standing snowboard cross, which will make its debut in Sochi as a part of the alpine skiing program.
Various USOC one year countdown activities and promotions include:
• Road to Sochi telecast
• Road to Sochi national media teleconference
• Olympic week on NBC's Today
• Athlete appearances in New York City
• One Year Out digital preview and press kit
• Social media opportunities for fans
• Bi-monthly Going for the Gold video series highlighting top Team USA hopefuls for 2014
• 2014 athlete features and slideshows on TeamUSA.org
Road to Sochi telecast
The USOC, in partnership with NBC Sports Network, Universal Sports, the U.S. Biathlon Association, USA Curling and USA Luge, will air 20 hours of action-packed winter sport competition beginning Feb. 8, and running through Feb. 16. Full details of the Road to Sochi telecast will be released on Feb. 7.
Road to Sochi national media teleconference
To commemorate the one year countdown, the USOC will host its first Road to Sochi media teleconference at 1 p.m. (ET) on Feb. 6, with Olympic medalists and 2014 hopefuls - ice hockey player Julie Chu (Fairfield, Conn.), bobsledder Steve Holcomb (Park City, Utah) and alpine skier Julia Mancuso (Squaw Valley, Calif.) - as well as USOC Chief of Sport Performance Alan Ashley. The teleconference will preview the outlook of Team USA for the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games and allow media to ask questions of top 2014 hopefuls on their preparation for the Games. For more information on the teleconference, visit TeamUSA.org/media.
Olympic week on Today
NBC's Today will feature several U.S. Olympians and hopefuls during the week of Feb. 4, culminating with a mini-Olympic Festival in Rockefeller Plaza and extended segments on the one year to competition landmark on Feb. 6. More than a dozen athletes will appear on the program on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and on the final day, a slopestyle ski hill, complete with rails, will be built in the plaza for Sochi 2014 hopefuls to perform. There will also be elements for public interaction, including bobsled and ski lift photo booths, the Omega countdown clock and more.
Athlete Appearances in New York City
A number of U.S. Olympians and hopefuls will take part in appearances throughout New York City on Wednesday, Feb. 6, including:
• Slopestyle skiers Bobby Brown, Keri Herman and Tom Wallisch will sign autographs for the public at the NBC Experience Store in New York City at 11 a.m.
• Olympic champions and Sochi 2014 hopefuls will ring the Closing Bell at the NASDAQ MarketSite in Times Square at 4 p.m.
One-Year-Out Digital Preview and Press Kit
The USOC's One-Year-Out Digital Preview highlights key U.S. hopefuls in all 15 Olympic winter sport disciplines and provides storylines and social media information on U.S. athletes, key dates in the 2013-14 sport season and details on U.S. Olympic Team selection procedures. The preview also features facts and figures about the 2014 Olympic Winter Games and lists key communications contacts within each NGB. Beginning Feb. 6, the press kit can be found on TeamUSA.org/media.
U.S. Paralympics will issue Paralympic-specific information in the run-up to its one-year-out landmark on March 7, 2013.
Social media opportunities for fans
On Feb. 6, slopestyle skiers Bobby Brown, Keri Herman and Tom Wallisch - who all recently competed in the 2013 Winter X Games in Aspen, Colo. - will participate in a live chat hosted on the U.S. Olympic Team Facebook page where they'll answer fan questions in real time starting at approximately 10 a.m. There will also be 14 fan giveaways throughout the day on Twitter, featuring must-have Team USA gear, apparel signed by 2014 Olympic hopefuls and more.
Going for the Gold video series
Going for the Gold is a storytelling and biographically-based video series to be featured on TeamUSA.org and YouTube.com/TeamUSA beginning Feb. 6, and running on a bi-monthly basis until the start of the 2014 Olympic Winter Games. This video series will provide an up close and personal look at 2014 Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls through clips designed to provide fun facts and tidbits about Team USA. All videos can be downloaded to media sites through a YouTube embeddable player.
Sochi 2014 Content on Team USA Digital Platforms
TeamUSA.org will showcase a one year countdown theme beginning Feb. 6, with photo slideshows, athlete features and videos related to the 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games and top U.S. athletes to watch in each of the Olympic and Paralympic sports. This content will be supported by a Road to Sochi playlist available on Team USA's YouTube channel and Team USA merchandise giveaways on Facebook and Twitter.