VANOC Continues Testing with Ice Sledge Hockey Sport

Author: VANOC
Published: 2009/02/25 - Updated: 2017/12/24
Contents: Summary - Introduction - Main - Related

Synopsis: The first international event to take place at UBC Thunderbird Arena will showcase ice sledge hockey.

Introduction

The first international event to take place at UBC Thunderbird Arena will showcase high-performance athletes in a sport few British Columbians have witnessed "ice sledge hockey. Athletes body-check with full force, shoot pucks at 70 miles per hour and fly down the ice propelled by razor-sharp picks on the ends of their two sticks "and the sport is coming to Vancouver!

Main Digest

VANOC continues operational testing with ice sledge hockey sport event. Tickets available at $10 for a single game or $50 for a complete 10-game package.

The first international event to take place at UBC Thunderbird Arena will showcase high-performance athletes in a sport few British Columbians have witnessed "ice sledge hockey. Athletes body-check with full force, shoot pucks at 70 miles per hour and fly down the ice propelled by razor-sharp picks on the ends of their two sticks "and the sport is coming to Vancouver!

As approximately 60 athletes from Canada, Germany, Japan and the USA take to the ice, the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games (VANOC) will test the arena's operational readiness for ice sledge hockey in advance of the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.

One of the fastest and most popular events at the Paralympic Winter Games, the ice sledge hockey sport event will offer the public a unique opportunity to learn more about this spectacular sport and the world-class athletes who will be competing. Single-game tickets are available for $10 each, while full-tournament packages "including tickets to all 10 games "are available at $50. (All ticket packages are subject to applicable service fees.)

"It's exciting to showcase the demanding sport of sledge hockey while we test our operational readiness at UBC's Thunderbird Arena," said Tim Gayda, VANOC's vice president, sport. "Sledge hockey is an incredible sport whose popularity and recognition in Canada continues to grow on the strength of three medals [one gold, one silver, one bronze] by the Canadian team in the past four Paralympic Games. As we host the world's best sledge hockey players this week, we hope spectators will be wowed by this incredible sport, and that the athletes will enjoy the world-class facility they're set to compete in."

VANOC will focus its operational testing on the following areas: ice maintenance and quality, board system, and accessibility.

Field of Play

VANOC's testing of the field of play (athletes' competition areas) will focus primarily on the ice and board system. Ice maintenance and quality will be examined, as well as the dasher board system (board system containing the ice), the Olympia ice resurfacing machine operation and the conversion of the board system from ice hockey to Paralympic field of play standards.

Ice sledge hockey players are seated only a few centimeters off the ice; to view the play from within the bench a clear Plexiglas system will be installed in front of the players' and penalty boxes. Additionally, rather than using the standard rubber matting in the bench areas, VANOC will test the building of ice in the players' and penalty boxes for easier mobility.

VANOC will test the heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system and the capacity for this new venue to adjust the temperature, relative humidity and air flow to react to external weather conditions in order to maintain the best quality of ice for the athletes.

The Father David Bauer Ice Rink, attached directly to the venue, will be the ice sledge hockey training facility at Games time. During the ice sledge hockey sport event, the rink will also be used for training and to test elevator access and flow of athletes between both rinks.

Venue Operations

VANOC will test general venue operations including spectator services, workforce and athlete flows, and media work areas as well as overall spectator accessibility. Accessible team buses will be used to test the athlete transportation system, while the athlete entrance will mirror Paralympic Games-time standards to test flow and equipment transport.

Workforce
Approximately 450 workforce (300 volunteers, 75 contractors and 75 staff) will participate at the ice sledge hockey sport event. The majority are technical sport volunteers and event services personnel (approximately 150) with other groups including food and beverage services, sport production (such as announcers and DJs), transport and parking staff. Processes such as volunteer check-in, training and scheduling are being tested. VANOC will also be integrating the existing UBC venue staff with VANOC workforce to create one team.

In keeping with previous sport events, VANOC will also test its Press Operations, Timing, Scoring and Results, Medical Services and Sport Production functions.

Background on Ice Sledge Hockey

Ice sledge hockey follows all the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) rules, with a few small modifications.

Instead of standing on skates, players sit on aluminum or steel sledges fitted with two blades. They grip two double-ended sticks, one in each hand. One end of the stick has a sharp pick that the players use to propel the sledge, the other has a curved blade to pass and shoot the puck.

A team must not have more than six players on the ice while play is in progress. The object is for one team to get the puck (a hard, black rubber disc) past the other team's goaltender and into the goal.
A regular game consists of three 15-minute periods.

This summer, along with Canada Hockey Place, UBC Thunderbird Arena will host the women's hockey sport event from August 31 to September 6, 2009.

For more information on the remaining sport events taking place from February to September 2009, including how to purchase tickets, please visit www.vancouver2010.com.

Remaining sport events taking place from February to September 2009 include:

WCF World Wheelchair Curling Championship
Date: February 21-28, 2009
Location: Vancouver Paralympic Center, Vancouver

Hockey Canada Cup - Sledge Hockey
Date: February 24-March 1, 2009
Location: UBC Thunderbird Arena, Vancouver

IPC Cross-Country Skiing and Biathlon World Cup Final
Date: March 4-7, 2009
Location: Whistler Paralympic Park, Whistler

World Junior Curling Championships
Date: March 5-15, 2009
Location: Vancouver Olympic Center, Vancouver

IPC Alpine Skiing World Cup Finals
Date: March 9-14, 2009
Location: Whistler Creekside, Whistler

IBU Biathlon World Cup
Date: March 11-15, 2009
Location: Whistler Olympic Park

ISU World Single Distances Speed Skating Championships
Date: March 12-15, 2009
Location: Richmond Olympic Oval, Richmond

Hockey Canada Cup - Women's Hockey
Date: August 31-September 6, 2009

Location: UBC Thunderbird Arena and Canada Hockey Place, Vancouver

About VANOC

VANOC is responsible for the planning, organizing, financing and staging of the XXI Olympic Winter Games and the X Paralympic Winter Games in 2010. The 2010 Olympic Winter Games will be staged in Vancouver and Whistler from February 12 to 28, 2010. Vancouver and Whistler will host the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games from March 12 to 21, 2010. Visit www.vancouver2010.com.

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