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Leery Olympians turn to Japan for training camps

Date Posted: 2008-01-24

Three countries have chosen Okinawa as the site for their pre-Olympic training camps, and twelve others have announced similar plans to train in Japan prior to the August Olympics in Beijing.

England, Spain and Australia have already selected Ishigaki Island as the site for their training camps. They, along with numerous other countries, have expressed concerns about Beijing’s overcrowded conditions and polluted air, and opted to train in a better atmosphere. Some have also voiced worries about possible food poisoning in Beijing.

Greece, the United States, France, Finland, Sweden, Germany, Denmark, Holland, Poland, Bahrain, Ireland and New Zealand have already announced they will establish training camps in Japan. No sites have been selected yet.

Okinawa is aggressively wooing the countries in hopes of attracting them to the prefecture. Officials are already predicting Okinawa will be the best and most popular spot for Olympic camps. Additional countries are also expected to choose Japan as summer training sites.

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