Olympic Games' expert conducts live webcasts from Vancouver

Victoria University Olympics' studies expert Dr Richard Baka is now in his native Canada attending his sixth Games at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

Dr Baka, of VU's School of Sport and Exercise Science, is one of the country's few Olympic Games' academics and historians.

One of his roles while in Vancouver is to conduct live Elluminate lectures (similar to a webcasts) from Vancouver to university students in Australia, Canada and possibly Germany, all of whom are taking Olympic subjects this semester.

As an associate member of the Australian Centre for Olympic Studies and a member of the International Society of Olympic Historians, Richard has more than 35 years experience in all aspects of the Games, including presenting numerous papers on an array of Olympic topics at international conferences and delivering guest lectures around the world.

The Australian-Canadian academic will add the Vancouver Games to the list of other Olympics he has attended: the summer Olympic Games in Montreal in 1976, Los Angeles in 1984, Sydney in 2000, Beijing in 2008 and the Winter Olympics in Calgary in 1988. He has also attended several Commonwealth and University Games.

Dr Baka said even though Australia is best known for its prowess in summer sports, "Vancouver is like a second home to many of our winter athletes and there is a large contingent of Aussie supporters there on working holidays or making the trip to see the Games. All this will work in our favour. "

Australia has earned only six medals since it started participating in the Winter Games in 1936 (compared to more than 450 during the Summer Games). Its best performance was in Salt Lake City in 2002 when it won two golds "" in aerial skiing and speed skating.

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