Sochi, Russia, will host the 2014 Winter Olympics, the IOC announced today. Apparently, Vladimir Putin going to Guatemala to convince IOC members made the difference. Maybe he threatened to have them poisoned if they didn’t vote his way.
Regardless of how it all went down, when Jacques Rogge announced that Sochi would host, the locals were happy.
Now it’s time to learn a little bit about Sochi, a place we’ll be seeing plenty of on the teevee seven years hence. According to Wikipedia, “Joseph Stalin had his favourite dacha built in the city,” which is a Black Sea coastal resort. “The resort has the warmest climate in Russia, averaging +7 °C (44.6 °F) in January and February,” the article adds. That sounds like it might pose a bit of a problem in terms of having sufficient snow and ice outdoors for the sports requiring that stuff, but I’m guessing the IOC thought that one through already.
Anyway, congrats to Sochi. More info here.