The medals for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games were unveiled at a meeting of the international committee in St Petersburg today. The design for the medals, which are 10mm thick and 100mm in diameter, features the Olympic rings alongside a “patchwork quilt” representing the diversity of the Russia’s different ethnicities. The reverse of the medals contains the name of the competition in English and the logo of the Sochi 2014 Games.
According to a statement on the official Olympic website: “The medals depict the landscape of Sochi, with the sun’s golden rays reflecting through a prism of snowy mountain tops onto the sandy beaches of the Black Sea coast.” Organisers will be producing 1,300 medals from a combination of metal and polycarbonate with each taking around 18 hours to create. A total of 3kg of gold was used for the gold-plated medals.
The Winter Olympic and Paralympics Games in Sochi, which will take place in February 2014, are on track to become the most expensive games ever. At around $50bn, they will dwarf the previous record set by Beijing in 2008. Given that the Olympics are the first opportunity to showcase Russia to the world since the collapse of the Soviet Union, President Vladimir Putin has taken a strong personal interest in ensuring the Games are delivered.
Earlier this year, organisers revealed the design for the Olympic torch, which took its inspiration from the firebird’s feather, used in Russian fairytales to provide light. The torch will begin its 65,000km relay in October.