Barcelona and her relation to sport
Barcelona has a sporting tradition, the habitants of Barcelona are the most sportive compared to the habitants of other big cities in Europe. The bike is used more and more ( still less then in Holland). And the climate is perfect for outside sporters. A soft climate without strong winters. The fact that Barcelona is located at the seaside makes that the beaches and parks are most of the time full with joggers, skaters and bikers. Barcelona is the homebase of the famous Spanish football team: FC Barcelona or Barca, one of the biggest in Europe and twice winner of the UEFA Champions Leaque. The club has his own stadium called Camp Nou in the districs Les Corts. Members of the club are called socios. . FC Barcelona has also teams in the Spanish basketball ACB league, the handball ASOBAL league and the roller hockey league. The clubs museum is the second most visited museum in Catalonia. The second football club of Barcelona is Espanyol, they used to have their own stadium but now theyre plaing there games in the Olympic stadium called Estadi Olmpic Llus on the Montjuic which was build for the Summer Olympics. The two football stadiums are both UEFA 5-star rated. The city was chosen to organize the Summer Olympics in 1992. Barcelona also hosted the X FINA World Championships, twice the Eurobasket and the ATP Tour International Series Gold tennis tournament, Open Seat Godo which is held annually in the facilities of the Reial Club de Tenis Barcelona. Every year there is a Formula 1 race, Formula One Spanish Grand Prix, organized on the circuit de Catalunya in Montmel, a town close to Barcelona. On this circuit is also the Catalan Motorcycle Gran Prix. There are marathons and other running competitions organized year-round. Every year at Christmas there is a swimming race across the port and there is a massive skate tournament. Skating has become really popular in Barcelona which has led to a anti-skateboarding law.
In 1992 the Summer Olympics were held in Barcelona.
Barcelona is the hometown of IOC-president Juan Antonio Samaranch. Barcelona was selected over Amsterdam, Belgrado, Birmingham, Brisbane, Paris and Lausanne. Safety was the top-priority, they were afraid for attacks of the ETA and demonstrations of the Catalan independence fighters, but neither of this happened. All of the IOC countries participated here for the first time since Munich 1972. South Africa was allowed again to participate after a 28 years suspension for its apartheid policy. The German Reunification of 1990 made germany participating with a single team since 1960. The Sovjet Union was dissolved in 1992 so the Baltic Nations of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania participated with their own teams for the first time since 1936. The other Sovjet republics took part in the Unified Team which was formed by twelve states. The break-up of Yugoslavia led to the debuts of Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia Herzegovina. Yugoslav athletes were not allowed to participate with their own team but could compete under the Olympic flag as Independent Olympic Participants. Also Cuba who had boycotted the Olympics a lot of year participated again. The Paralympic archer Antonio Rebollo lit the Olympic flame by firing a burning arrow towards the cauldron. In Basketball there was for the first time admittance of professional players, which made the competition a lot easier for the American Dream Team with players like Micheal Jordan, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird. Slalom canoeing returned to the Games after a 20-year absence. Basque pelote, roller hockey, teakwondo and Valencian pilota were demo sports. The sporters were from all ages so won the 13 year old Fu Mingxia the high diving event and 32 year old Christie Linford won the 100m. The musical themes for the Games were Barcelona written by Freddie Mercury and sung with Montserrat Caballe. They were to have performed the song during the opening ceremony, but due to Mercurys untimely death the year before the song was played over a travelogue of the city at the start of the opening ceremony. The other musical theme was Amigos Para Siempre, which means Friend for Life. This was written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Don Black.
Barcelona is the capital of Catalonia and the second largest city in Spain, It is located on the Mediterranean coast, with one of Europe’s principal ports, and its airport is the second largest in Spain. Founded as a Roman city, Barcelona is today an important cultural centre and became a major tourist destination after the 1992 World Olimpics. Particularly renowned are architectural works of Antoni Gaud that have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
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Posted from Spain:
posted Wednesday November 2007