Russia says no snow shortage for Sochi Games

Moscow, June 30 (IANS) There will be no shortage of snow for the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympic Games, the head of the Russian Olympic Committee has said seeking to dispel concerns over possible shortage amid unseasonably warm weather.

"There will be no problems with snow," Alexander Zhukov said Saturday, adding that the Olympics would go ahead "in any weather", reports Xinhua.

"In the mountain region this year a certain reserve of snow has already been gathered," Zhukov said.

He noted that the stored snow could support "all the mountain disciplines".

Meanwhile, some test events including stages of the Cup of Russia Nordic combined event and the slopestyle disciplines of the freestyle World Cup had to be cancelled due to warm weather this winter.

The organising committee has stored some 450,000 cubic metres of snow in seven special reservoirs. The largest reservoir, built at a cost of 250 million rubles ($8 million), has a capacity of 100,000 cubic metres.

The Winter Olympic Games is slated for February 2014 with medals in 98 events to be contested, including 12 new, such as men's and women's snowboard and ski slopestyle, the ski halfpipe, snowboard parallel special slalom, women's ski jumping, the figure skating team event, the luge relay and the biathlon mixed relay.

The Russian government allocated nearly 100 billion rubles (some $3 billion) for the preparation of infrastructure for the Sochi Olympics and 144 billion rubles ($4.6 billion) more have been received from non-budget sources.

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