Greek cross-country skier launches PyeongChang2018 Olympic Torch Relay

Marking the countdown to the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018, the Olympic flame was lit in Ancient Olympia yesterday, 24th October 2017.

24-year old cross-country skier Apostolos Angelis from Greece was the first torchbearer, receiving the flame from High Priestess Katerina Lehou, a Greek actress who was responsible for lighting the flame. Angelis ran with it for a short distance before passing it on to famous football player Park Ji-Sung from the Republic of Korea.

Over the following week, the flame will travel around Greece. It will cover 2,129km on Greek territory and will arrive at the Acropolis on 30th October. Some 505 torchbearers will participate, and 36 welcome ceremonies will be held in 20 municipalities over the eight days. The ceremony to hand over the flame to the PyeongChang 2018 Organising Committee will be held at the Panathenaic Stadium next week, on 31st October.

Then the flame will make its way 8,500km east, to the Korean city of Incheon, arriving on 1st November to coincide with 100 days to go until the start of the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018.

Thereafter, the Olympic Torch Relay will see the flame embark on a tour of the entire host country, taking in nine provinces and eight major cities, before it finally arrives at the PyeongChang Olympic Stadium in time for the Opening Ceremony on 9th February 2018.

About the Torch

The PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Torch measures 700mm to represent ‘Happy 700’, a unique concept promoted by PyeongChang. This concept stems from the belief that the most comfortable environment for human habitation can be found at 700 metres above the sea level, which is where the host city is located. White was chosen as the colour of the Olympic torch to represent the snowy landscape of PyeongChang. Meanwhile, its curved design, textured surface and colour were inspired by the elegant beauty of Korea’s traditional white porcelain.

Watch the highlights from the first day here.