January 8 - Innsbruck 2012 has revealed that 80 per cent of tickets available for the inaugural Winter Youth Olympic Games have now been sold to spectators from Austria and around the world.
Tickets for the Ceremonies were among the first to be snapped up by fans with a sell-out crowd of 15,000 set to pack the Bergisel Stadium for the Opening Ceremony this Friday (January 13) and a total of 4,000 scheduled to line-up to watch the Closing Ceremony in Maria-Theresien-Strasse on January 22.
Peter Bayer, the chief executive of the Innsbruck 2012, said there is clear excitement for the competition given that the majority of the 80,000 tickets have now been sold.
"Of the 80,000 tickets available, 64,000 have gone," he said.
"I think that just goes to show the level of interest in the first Winter Youth Olympic Games, both here in Austria and abroad."
All remaining tickets will be available from tomorrow until the end of the Games on a first-come, first-served.
Tickets will be available, free of charge, via the Venue Information Booth on Medals Plaza at the northern end of Maria-Theresien-Strasse or via the Innsbruck 2012 online webshop at www.innsbruck2012.com/en/tickets.
However, all of the events held in the open-air competition venues such as Patscherkofel, Olympic Sliding Centre Innsbruck, Seefeld and Kühtai will be open to the public for free and will not require a ticket.
Innsbruck 2012 will see almost 1,100 athletes between the ages of 14 and 18 from over 60 countries compete in the same sports that will feature at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.
The event, which is widely credited as being the brainchild of the current International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Jacques Rogge, follows on from the successful inaugural Summer Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in 2010.
Rogge will officially declare the Innsbruck 2012 Youth Olympic opening at the Ceremony at Bergisel Stadium on January while a number of dignitaries will be in attendance including Heinz Fischer, the President of Austria.
The Austrian President will also officially open the International Sports Press Association (AIPS) 75th Anniversary Congress in Innsbruck on the morning of the Opening Ceremony.
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January 2012: Innsbruck 2012 give away more free tickets
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November 2011: Free tickets released for Innsbruck 2012 Winter Youth Olympics
October 2011: Austrian President Fischer receives first official Innsbruck 2012 ticket