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ROSTOV-ON-DON, January 22, /ITAR-TASS/. The Olympic Torch relay-race arrives here on Wednesday at 10:00, Moscow time. The Torch will be driven through Sholokhov Avenue by a grain harvester made by the local Rostselmash farm machinery manufacturing plant.
"We want to emphasize that the Land of the Don is Russia's granary and bread-winner capable of both yielding bumper crops and fostering Olympic winners," Region Governor Vassily Golubev said.
The relay's 43-km route runs along the path of the traditional Rostov Ring marathon, said an official in the press service of the City Council. Forecasts have it that the Olympic Torch will be greeted by about 40,000 people. Organizers promise to arrange a motor rally of retro automobiles Wednesday.
Marina Logvinenko, the only holder of five Olympic medals in the history of domestic shooting sport, will be the first to carry theTorch in Rostov. In the course of the day, 267 torch-bearers, among them 51 Rostov-based sportsmen, including 14 Olympic medallists, will carry the the Torch via the historical and cultural landmarks of the city.
Konstantin Pilipchuk, the 2012 world acrobatics champion, acknowledged that participation in the Olympic Torch relay is for him as a representative of a non-Olympic sport an opportunity to draw closer to the Olympics. "I shall eagerly carry the Torch through the streets of my native city Rostov. Friends intend to gather along the route to cheer me up," Pilipchuk told Itar-Tass.
One of the most colourful stages of the relay will take place on Bolshaya Sadovaya (Big Orchards) Street, the location of a Music Theatre, the House of Margarita Chenova, Staro-Pokrovskaya (Intercession) Church, the Fortress of St Dimitrius of Rostove, as well as a Federal monument of architecture -- the City House (city council) built in 1899 to a design by architect Alexander Pomerantsev.
The finishing point of the relay will be in Theatre Square where an Olympic Flame Bowl is installed. According to the scenario, the Flame will be lighted by Andrei Moiseyev, two-time modern pentathlon Olympic winner.
Over there, near the Gorky Theatre, a gala programme is to be presented from 18:00 to 20:00 by sportsmen, folk and professional performing groups. A festive fireworks display will ensue.
The regional branch of the Post of Russia (at 63 Sokolov Avenue) on Wednesday will cancel the envelopes and postage-stamps issued in honour of the XXII Winter Olympic Games in Sochi-2014. Such actions are particularly popular with postage-stamp collectors. The stamp bears an engraved map of Russia, the Sea Terminal of Sochi, the Olympic Torch and the outlines of the Moscow Kremlin. There is an inscription below "The Olympic Torch relay-race. Rostov-on-Don 344000". The stamps will be valid only on the indicated day -- " 22.01.2014".
The Olympic Torch has been touring Rostov Region for a second day now. On Tuesday, the relay travelled via the neighbouring cities of Novocherkassk and Shakhty (coalmines). The relay participants and torchbearers braved ten-degree (Celsius) frost and piercing wind. On Thursday, January 23, the Olympic Torch will leave Rostov Region by train on its way to Stavropol Territory.
Within a period from 1952 to 2012, 223 sportsmen of Rostov Region took part in Summer Olympic Games and won 113 medals -- 40 gold, 32 silver and 41 bronze ones.
By the opening ceremony of the Games at Fisht Stadium in Sochi on February 7, the Olympic Torch elay-race will cover more than 65,000 kilometres across the territory of Russia and encompass all constituent entities of the Russian Federation. The Relay will be the longest one in Olympic history.