Today, at Palazzo Graziani, the San Marino Secretariat of State for Sport, the San Marino NOC and SM2017 Organizing Committee held a press conference at 20 days from the Opening Ceremony of the 17th edition of the Games of the Small States of Europe in San Marino.
The date was not chosen by chance. Last Monday, accreditation procedures for the 9 delegations were completed and the number of athletes taking part to the 17th edition of the Games became official: 894 athletes (526 men and 368 women) are coming to San Marino thus setting a record as for the number of participants. If we add technicians, supporters, officers, authorities and VIPs, the number of accredited people will far exceed 1,400.
“The Games shall rouse our people’s unity”, explained the President of San Marino Olympic Committee, Mr. Gian Primo Giardi. “Now that I am sure everything has been organized as best as we could, I wish our facilities will be full of cheerful people supporting not only our teams but also those of the other countries”.
“TOGETHER is the theme which will be developed during the Opening Ceremony” – said the Chairman of the Organizing Committee, Mr. Angelo Vicini – “and it shall be the recurrent theme of all the Games. I won’t tell you much about the Opening Ceremony except that more than 700 children will take part in the choreography thanks to our cooperation with local schools. The official anthem of the Games will be sung by three great San Marino artists: Monica Hill, Luca Grassi and the choir of San Marino”.
The tickets of the Opening Ceremony, taking place on 29th May, will be sold at CONS from 16th May and they will cost 10 euros (purchase modalities will be communicated by this week).
“We cannot calculate the total turnover that this event will generate in San Marino” – stated Mr. Giardi – “however, I can already confirm that our hotels have been entirely used to accommodate athletes and local transport companies will be fully involved to fulfil our mobility programme. Finally, except for those circumstances where we could not act in a different way, we have always chosen local professionals and companies”.
“These will be unique Games” said the Secretary of State for Sport, Mr. Marco Podeschi. “It will be the most important sports event we have ever organized in San Marino and we want everything to be perfect. The Republic of San Marino shall be ready and the Secretariat will play its part. I cannot deny that some projects have been speeded up thanks to the Games”, added Mr. Podeschi. “I mean the improvements in telecommunications or the installation of charging points for electric cars. I want to thank my predecessors and those who have been committed to the organization of this event: I know that it is not easy, but I think that if we all go along the same way, we will do something which will be memorable”.
Then, Mr. Podeschi said that he will meet the Ministries of Sport of other countries and one of the issues he will discuss with them will be eco-sustainability through the promotion of a completely sustainable edition of the Games, which paid special attention to ecology and the environment.
“Besides the Ministries of participating countries, we will host also sports champions and important members of sports organizations”, said the Secretary General of CONS, Mr. Eros Bologna. “There will be several Heads of State and among them stands out the name of Thomas Bach, IOC President, who will be present at the Opening Ceremony and at some competitions on the following day. There will be some major officers from IOC, Olympic Solidarity, European NOCs (Presidents and Secretaries General) and some organizers of the Games of the Mediterranean. Our Italian neighbours will send President Giovanni Malagò and Secretary General Roberto Fabbricini. Presidents of European and International Federations will be present too. These Games will be great also as far as this aspect is concerned”.
Then, Angelo Vicini mentioned some numbers of the Games. Transport services will be covered by a network of 14 buses and 70 cars (some of them will be electric cars). The issue of security will be fundamental, as it has become a priority of all big events. Therefore, security check points will be set up at all sports facilities (entrance is free of charge) and at the Olympic Village in Serravalle, which may be reached only through passages controlled by the local police forces. The headquarters and the press room will be on the 1st floor at Multieventi. Two sports areas have been arranged: the first one Serravalle, which includes the Stadium (for athletics and volleyball), Multieventi (for swimming and basketball), the baseball ground (for beach volley) and Ciarulla (for trap shooting). The second area will be in Montecchio where archery competitions will take place (at the soccer field) together with tennis and mountain biking events. Kursaal in San Marino Città will host table tennis competitions, while Acquaviva will provide the venue for shooting and judo events and finally, bocce matches will take place at the alley in Valdragone. Road cycling races will start from Faetano (stream area). Over 600 volunteers were recruited last year while about a hundred journalists will arrive from 9 different countries. San Marino RTV will broadcast the Games 24 hours a day on its sports channel thus ensuring live coverage of 4 events a day. The mainstream channel has scheduled specific time slots for the Games. Cooperation with local schools, trade and business associations and companies has been fundamental: “They have all given their support just as we expected they would do”, said Mr. Vicini.
Events programme is ready and in a few days you can find it at www.sanmarino2017.sm and on the application for smartphones made available with great professionalism by Internet.sm.