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|USA Wrestling selects Las Vegas to host 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials and 2007 U.S. World Team Trials|
By Gary Abbott of USA Wrestling Michael Mack of Las Vegas Events
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - USA Wrestling has selected Las Vegas to host two of its most important Olympic level events in the next two years, the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wrestling and the 2007 U.S. World Team Trials.
The local organizing committee for these two events will be Las Vegas Events, which has successfully hosted numerous major sports events in the city.
The 2007 U.S. World Team Trials will be held at the Las Vegas Convention Center, June 9-10. This event will determine the 2007 U.S. World Team that will compete at the 2007 World Wrestling Championships in Baku, Azerbaijan in all three Olympic wrestling styles: men's freestyle, men's Greco-Roman and women's freestyle.
The 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wrestling will be held at the Thomas and Mack Center on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas - Las Vegas, June 13-15. This event will determine the U.S. team in all three styles that will represent the United States at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.
"Las Vegas and Las Vegas Events presented USA Wrestling with an opportunity to take these properties to a higher level," said USA Wrestling Executive Director Rich Bender. "We are confident the organizing committee and the entire community will step forward to insure the success of the 2007 U.S. World Team Trials and the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wrestling. We are excited to form a partnership with Las Vegas Events to the benefit of both parties well into the future."
"We are certainly excited about the opportunity to host two of the most prestigious wrestling competitions in consecutive years," said Pat Christenson, president of Las Vegas Events and a former NCAA wrestling champion. "We have experience in hosting wrestling events, and we think that Las Vegas will provide a perfect backdrop for these two events. To be chosen as the host city is significant for Las Vegas, and we're happy to add this to our growing roster of events."
Each year, Las Vegas plays host to numerous major sports events including the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, NASCAR Nextel Cup and Craftsman Truck Series events, NHRA Drag Racing, USA Basketball Men's Senior National Team Training and Exhibition, the Las Vegas Bowl, PBR World Finals, Vegoose Music Festival and the signature New Year's Eve production, America's Party.
Among the major wrestling events held in Las Vegas has been the U.S. National Wrestling Championships, which has been held in the city 18 of the last 20 years. Included in the event has been the U.S. Senior Nationals, plus the Veterans Nationals, the FILA Junior Nationals and the Western Junior Regionals.
"Las Vegas will do a great job marketing, promoting and presenting the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wrestling and the 2007 U.S. World Team Trials," said Pete Isais, USA Wrestling's Director of National Events. "They also have great ideas for other activities surrounding the Trials events which will draw additional spectators. We look forward to working together to make this the best U.S. Olympic Team Trials in the history of USA Wrestling."
Las Vegas Events plans to launch an aggressive marketing campaign to encourage the wrestling community and the general public to attend these major events and enjoy the many entertainment and cultural activities available in Las Vegas.
As the host city, Las Vegas is a world-class travel destination. Las Vegas offers spectacular shopping, dining, entertainment, and non-stop excitement 24 hours a day. With approximately 133,000 hotel rooms in Las Vegas alone, more than 38.7 million visitors are expected to make the city their convention and tourist destination this year.
The United States is one of the world's top wrestling nations, and is expected to be a contender for a number of medals at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China. At the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece, the U.S. captured six medals, including individual Olympic champion Cael Sanderson in men's freestyle. At the 2006 World Wrestling Championships, the U.S. brought home nine medals, including two individual World champions, Bill Zadick in men's freestyle and Joe Warren in men's Greco-Roman.
The past sites for U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Wrestling, since USA Wrestling has been the National Governing Body, have included Allendale, Mich. (1984); Pensacola, Fla. (1988); Pittsburgh, Pa. for freestyle and Concord, Calif. for Greco-Roman (1992); Spokane, Wash. for freestyle and Concord, Calif. for Greco-Roman (1996); Dallas, Texas (2000) and Indianapolis, Ind. (2004).
For more information on USA Wrestling and the announcement, please go to www.TheMat.com or www.USAWrestlingLasVegas.com
About USA Wrestling
USA Wrestling is the National Governing Body for amateur wrestling in the United States, and as such, is a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee and the international wrestling federation FILA. USA Wrestling coordinates grassroots and elite wrestling programs across the country, and works to create interest and participation in these programs. USA Wrestling's 145,000-strong membership includes athletes of all ages, plus officials, coaches, parents, volunteers and fans.
About Las Vegas Events
Founded in 1983, Las Vegas Events, Inc. has grown with Las Vegas as the city has emerged as one of the world's top special event and resort destinations. A private, not-for-profit organization, LVE is funded by hotel room tax and serves as the exclusive major special events agency for the city. Since 1991, Las Vegas Events has produced, presented or supported more than 300 events, which have driven more than 2.8 million visitors to the area, resulting in an economic impact of more than $1.6 billion.