It was on 25 July 1992, with the eyes of the world upon him, that Antonio Rebollo shot the arrow that signalled the start of the XXV Olympic Games. He received the flame from the basketball player Juan Antonio San Epifáneo – ‘EPI’. Twenty years later, Epi was responsible for receiving, from the hand of the mayor of Barcelona at the time, Pasqual Maragall, the commemorative torch of the 20th anniversary of those Games. Marc Rocas, a student at the EINA School of Art and Design, was the winner of a competition organised by the San Miguel beer brand ‘San Miguel 0.0%’, which entailed designing a commemorative torch for the 20th anniversary.
The torch was carried to the Joan Antoni Samaranch Olympic and Sports Museum by 38 relay runners, including Olympic and Paralympic athletes, an Olympic volunteer, the referee who swore the oath at Barcelona ’92 and a number of journalists. Gervasio Deferr, a stalwart of Olympic sport, was responsible for lighting the commemorative cauldron alongside Xavier Trias under the gaze of an excited and expectant audience who revived the Olympic Spirit feeling at the moment the cauldron’s flame was lit. Barcelona represented a before and after at the Games of ’92, and 20 years later that memory is still very much alive in the soul of the city.
After the lighting of the cauldron, sports personalities Gemma Mengual and Josep Mª Van der Ploeg spoke on behalf of all of the relay runners, explaining what the Olympic Games meant to them and how proud that moment made them feel.
Next, the Secretary General for Sport, Ivan Tibau, wanted to give thanks for the tremendous effort involved in the ’92 Barcelona Olympics and how the fruit of all that work was reflected in the quality of sport today.
David Moner, on behalf of the UFEC, which he chairs, presented Xavier Trias with a statue by Rosa Serra which symbolises the most spectacular moment of the Games, when the cauldron was lit.
To close the event, the Olympic flag was raised in memory of “The Best Games in History”.