The Rio Olympic torch and torch relay route were unveiled on Friday, 399 days out from the opening of the 2016 Rio Games.
The unique design of the torch incorporates “Brazilian flair,” the Rio 2016 website explains. The open segments reveal “harmonious diversity, contagious energy and exuberant nature--with the ground, sea, mountains, sky and sun represented in the colors of the Brazilian flag.” The segments will open up at the “moment of the kiss, when the flame is passed from one bearer to another.”
The torch relay will begin with the traditional flame lighting ceremony in Olympia, Greece, where the Ancient Olympic Games were born. Then the torch will begin its tour of Brazil in May 2016.
Starting in the capital city of Brasilia and passing through an expected 500 cities and towns, the Olympic torch route was designed to reach as much of the Brazilian population as possible--an estimated 90 per cent of the public. Carlos Arthur Nuzman, Rio 2016 President, said, “We want to show the world the chemistry that we believe will be born when the Olympic Flame meets the warmth of the Brazilian people.”
The torch relay will end on August 5th, when it will light the Olympic Cauldron at Maracana Stadium during the Opening Ceremony. The relay will last between 90 and 100 days, allowing for technical breaks or special photo events.
The Olympic torch relay creates excitement for the upcoming Games and allows the citizens of the host country to participate in the festivities. Here are some photos of past Olympic torches and relays: