Camel to carry torch in Sochi Olympic relay

Camel
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The Sochi Olympic torch relay, among other exploits, has included sled dogs and reindeer (and, it is expected, a dolphin).

Add a camel to the list.

A two-humped camel will carry an Olympic torch in the city of Chelyabinsk, the site above which a meteor exploded on Feb. 15. The Olympic torch relay is scheduled to visit Chelyabinsk from Dec. 16-17.

Here’s what Voice of Russia reports:

The eight-year-old animal, whose height reaches two and a half meters, is taught to unassisted carrying of riders and getting to its knees which is very important for an inexperienced rider with the torch.

The camel is regarded as Chelyabinsk’s symbol for more than 200 years. Starting from the late 18th century, the animal has been depicted on the city’s emblem, emphasizing the importance of Chelyabinsk as a trade center. In 2002, the camel appeared on the emblem of the Chelyabinsk region. Camels can be seen at most of the important public events in Chelyabinsk. One even has a chance to ride a camel or take a picture with it in the city’s parks.

Video: Sochi relay torchbearer catches fire from Olympic flame