2016 Winter Youth Olympics
|II Winter Youth Olympic Games|
|Host city||Lillehammer, Hamar, Gjøvik, and Øyer|
|Motto||Go beyond. Create tomorrow.|
|Nations participating||approx. 70|
|Athletes participating||approx. 1100|
|Opening ceremony||12 February 2016|
|Closing ceremony||21 February 2016|
The 2016 Winter Youth Olympics (Norwegian: Vinter-OL for ungdom 2016), officially known as the II Winter Youth Olympic Games, is scheduled to take place in and around Lillehammer, Norway, between 12 February and 21 February 2016. It will be the fourth Youth Olympic Games and the second winter edition. Lillehammer was awarded the games on 7 December 2011 as the only candidate. The games will reuse venues from the 1994 Winter Olympics. In addition to Lillehammer, sports will be contested in Hamar, Gjøvik and Øyer.
Lillehammer was the only city to bid for the games. The Norwegian Olympic Committee talked with Norwegian and regional authorities to investigate a bid and ultimately submitted a bid to the IOC. Upon the deadline for bidding, they were the only city to bid. Lillehammer hosted the 1994 Winter Olympics. They bid for the 2012 Winter Youth Olympics, but failed to become a candidate. Lake Placid, Lucerne, Zaragoza and Sofia all expressed interest in bidding but ultimately failed to submit any bids.  On December 7, 2011, the International Olympic Committee selected Lillehammer as the host city of the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics.
In January 2012, Siri Hatlen was appointed as head of the Lillehammer 2016 Organizing Committee. At the Closing ceremony of the 2012 Winter Youth Olympics in Innsbruck, Lillehammer was handed the Olympic Flag. Tomas Holmestad (33) is CEO of Lillehammer 2016, which holds office at Oppland Fylkeskommune. In August 2014, Lillehammer Organizing Committee counts 20 employees, and this number is expected to rise to 70-80 employees in January 2016.
Nine competition and eleven non-competition venues are to be used, with all except the Youth Olympic Village in Lillehammer being existing venues. The games will be held in four municipalities: Lillehammer, Hamar, Gjøvik and Øyer. The former three are located nearby the lake of Mjøsa and each have about 27,000 residents, while Øyer has 5,000 residents and is located in the valley of Gudbrandsdalen. There will be five competition venues in Lillehammer, two in Hamar and one in Gjøvik and Øyer.
In Lillehammer, the twin ski jumping hill of Lysgårdsbakken has a spectator capacity of 35,000. Lysgårdsbakken has a hill size of 138 and a K-point of 120, while the normal hill has a hill size of 100 and a K-point of 90. Birkebeineren Ski Stadium will host cross-country skiing, biathlon and Nordic combined, with the stadium itself having a capacity for 31,000 spectators during cross-country skiing and 13,500 during biathlon. In addition, spectators could watch from along the tracks. Kanthaugen Freestyle Arena has a capacity for 15,000 spectators and will host freestyle skiing and half-pipe snowboarding.
Lillehammer Olympic Bobsleigh and Luge Track is located at Hunderfossen and is the only bobsleigh, luge and skeleton track in the Nordic Countries. Kristins Hall will host both ice hockey and curling. Gjøvik Olympic Cavern Hall is located in a man-made cave and will feature the short track speed skating events. In Hamar, Vikingskipet will host long track speed skating and Hamar Olympic Amphitheatre will host figure skating. Alpine skiing and slopestyle snowboarding will be undertaken at Hafjell in Øyer.
Stampesletta, a multi-sports complex next to Kristins Hall, will host the opening and closing ceremonies. The medal ceremonies will take place in the town plaza. Athlete and leader accommodation will be provided at two Olympic Villages, one in Lillehammer for the Lillehammer and Øyer-based events, and one in Hamar for the Hamar and Gjøvik-based events. The Lillehammer village consists of yet unbuilt student apartments in combination with an hotel and apartment resort. They will use Håkons Hall for dining. The Hamar village will be Hotel Scandic Hamar. In addition, there are five designated cultural venues in Lillehammer: Kulturhuset Banken, Lillehammer Art Museum, Lillehammer University College, Maihaugen and the Nansen Academy. The Main Media Centre will be located at Mesna Upper Secondary School, which is adjacent to Stampesletta.
All the competition venues were built ahead of the 1994 Winter Olympics. Kristins Hall is the only venue not used during those Games, while Håkons Hall and Kvitfjell were used. During Lillehammer 2016 Youth Olympic Games, Håkonshall will be the venue for the Learn & Share program, whilst Kristins Hall will be the official venue for ice hockey and curling. Kvitfjell will not be used, but Hafjell will be the main venue for downhill skiing, snowboard, and friskiing.
Lillehammer organizing committee launched an international mascot design competition in March and April 2014. The competition required that the design proposals would be on an animal (ordinary animal or a fantacy one), look youthful, be kind and open, sporty, and represent the look of Lillehammer 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games. LYOGOC received over 50 proposals from all over the world, and a jury consisting of Birgit Skarstein, Julie Strømsvåg, Simen Staalnacke, and Marianne Aagotnes, selected three finalists. The final proposals were presented on the official facebook page of Lillehammer 2016, where fans could vote on their favorite. It was the Lynx that won the competition, designed by 19 year old Line Ansethmoen.
The YOG will feature 7 sports and 15 disciplines.
- Nordic Team Event included with cross country skiing.
- Team ski-snowboard cross inculded with snowboarding.
A number of events have been added to the programme.
- Biathlon (1)
- Single mixed relay
- Bobsleigh (2)
- Monobob race (boys/girls)
- Cross-country skiing (2)
- Cross-country cross (boys/girls)
- Freestyle skiing (2)
- Slopestyle (boys/girls)
- Snowboarding (2)
- Snowboard cross (boys/girls)
- Combined (2)
- Mixed nordic team event
- Mixed team ski-snowboard cross
- Andorra (2)
- Argentina (1)
- Armenia (1)
- Australia (1)
- Austria (10)
- Belgium (1)
- Bulgaria (1)
- Canada (16)
- China (12)
- Croatia (2)
- Czech Republic (6)
- Estonia (1)
- Finland (10)
- France (11)
- Germany (13)
- Hungary (3)
- Israel (1)
- Italy (6)
- Japan (12)
- Kazakhstan (6)
- Latvia (3)
- Netherlands (6)
- Norway (21)
- Poland (4)
- Romania (2)
- Russia (25)
- Slovakia (1)
- Slovenia (11)
- South Korea (10)
- Sweden (6)
- Switzerland (10)
- Ukraine (4)
- United States (19)
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- Sofia Out Of 2016 Youth Winter Games Bid
- Lillehammer named Winter Youth Olympic Games host for 2016
- Businesswoman appointed head of Lillehammer 2016
- Innsbruck 2012 brought to close as Olympic flag passed to Lillehammer 2016
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- LOOC (III): 18–22
- NIF: 10
- LOOC (III): 31–36
- NIF: 8
- LOOC (III): 37–41
- NIF: 12
- NIF: 32
- NIF: 24
- NIF: 16
- IOC (2011): 6
- NIF: 34–37
- NIF: 47
- LOOC (III): 14
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