June 7, 2006

Costs force smaller surface for 2010 ice hockey

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (Reuters) - Ice hockey will be
played on the smaller North American-sized surface during the
2010 Olympics in Vancouver in a bid to save money, organizers
said on Wednesday.

Olympic hockey has traditionally been played on the larger
ice surfaces used in European leagues, but officials said the
change would save an estimated C$10 million in construction
costs and allow room for more seats.

Games organizers warned in February construction costs were
running 23 percent higher than was forecast when the city was
awarded the Olympics three years ago.

At least one of the Vancouver arenas scheduled to be used
in the 2010 Games would have needed a major reconstruction to
support the larger international-sized ice surface.

The International Ice Hockey Federation has agreed to the

The standard North American-sized ice hockey surface is 60
meters by 26 meters (200 feet by 85 feet) compared to the
international size of 60 meters by 30 meters (200 feet by 98.5