With Greece’s economy in disarray the HOC has revealed that several international companies have stepped forward to support the May 10-17 event, which is normally backed in part by the country’s government. The flame lighting ceremony will take place in Ancient Olympia, in southern Greece, on May 10 before the torch travels through 40 towns and cities on a 1,800-mile journey ahead of its trip to London for July’s Olympic Games.
“Despite the fact that we have huge financial difficulties as a country… we won’t scale down on what we are going to do on Greek soil about the torch relay,” said HOC head Spyros Capralos, according to the Associated Press. “It’s going all around the country… to remind all our fellow countrymen of the importance of the torch, the importance of the Olympic Games, that everything started from here.”
Greece’s financial travails have already had an effect from a sporting perspective with the country last year being stripped of its hosting rights to the 2013 Mediterranean Games over budget cuts.