The excitement is palpable; the Winter Olympics are fast approaching, and Monaco is in high gear with its team on maximum alert and already Prince Albert, in his role as President of the Monegasque Olympic Committee, has exhorted Monaco’ Olympian ski and bobsleigh athletes to heed the words of Baron Pierre de Coubertin who said of sports great athletes, that they: will seek fear to dominate it, will seek fatigue to triumph over it, and will seek difficulty in overcoming it.
Win with honour or participate with honour, it is going to be the experience of a lifetime. What is important, as Prince Albert highlighted, with his encouraging words, is to give one’s all – and return from the experience, secure in that accomplishment – and also knowing for the rest of one’s life you contributed to something greater than yourself.
And at a special presentation of Monaco’s Olympic team at the Fairmont Hotel Prince Albert announced that Rudy Rinaldi will be the proud carrier of the Monaco Flag when the Monegasque delegation presents itself in the opening ceremony.
The Olympics is truly the greatest of all sporting events. It is at the pinnacle of human endeavour in sport. Prince Albert himself is able to speak out of real experience about the Olympics having represented Monaco in the Winter Olympics as a member of Monaco’s bobsleigh team in Calgary 1988, Albertville 1992, Lillehammer 1994, Nagano 1998 and Salt Lake City 2002. And our Sovereign Prince gave his words of encouragement in front of Mr. Patrice Cellario, Government Counsellor-Minister of the Interior, HE Mrs. Yvette Lambin-Berti, Secretary General of the Monegasque Olympic Committee and many personalities.
And what about our four Olympians who will defend the colours of the Principality during the XXIII Olympic Winter Games. They are:
Alexandra Coletti, one of the best downhill skiers, and Olivier Jenot who competed for Monaco at the 2014 Winter Olympics in four alpine skiing events;
Rudy Rinaldi (pilot) and Boris Vain (brakeman) in bobsleigh.
The Winter Olympics is scheduled to take place over two weeks in PyeongChang (South Korea) from 9 to 25 February 2018.
And warm words from Prince Albert also for them “The Winter Olympics represent a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate its know-how for the country of the host city, which is receiving the attention of the media worldwide. For South Korea and its region under intense international scrutiny, the Olympic Games period will be a time of enthusiasm, sharing, friendship and solidarity.”
Tune in for the Opening ceremony on February 9th and look out proudly for the Monaco delegation and its flag. The closing ceremonies always provide a special climax, immensely colourful and entertaining, and take place on February, 25th.
In so many ways Monaco and the Olympics share the same passion. Their image is inseparable from international sport. It has been thus for most of modern history. And with the sport, comes the values echoed by Prince Albert and adopted in Monaco at the 127th Session of the International Olympic Committee in 2014.
“The Olympics are an inexhaustible source of dreams where the word fraternity takes on its full meaning. The first global sporting event in the world, the hallmark of the Olympic Games is tolerance, sustainability, social commitment, gender parity, and the affirmation of the central role of athletes and their protection. These values, all part of Monaco’s sporting culture, are all values affirmed in the Olympic Agenda 2020, strategic roadmap for the future of the Olympic Movement.”
Whether you watch in PyeongChang (South Korea) or in Monaco, a treat is in store for us. Speed, endurance, excitement, drama; all of that and more.