Russian Olympians to wear most boring logo ever

Written By:  •  Thursday, December 21, 2017

Widespread allegations of systematic, institutionalized doping have led to Russia being banned from the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, but the International Olympic Committee has made provisions for Russian athletes to compete without representing their home country.

The IOC yesterday unveiled an intentionally boring mark that Russian athletes will wear during competition. The text “Olympic Athlete from Russia,” which must be set in a font that is “as generic as possible,” per regulations from the IOC’s Olympic Athlete from Russia Implementation Group, is the only visual reference Russian athletes are permitted to make to their home country.

The mark can be set in one or two colors, and any use has to be approved by the IOC. The full set of regulations, as reported by NPR, is listed below:

1. Athletes’ uniforms (Ceremonies, competition, training and casual), accessories and equipment can only have two types of wordmarks: “OAR” and/or “Olympic Athlete from Russia”.

2. Officials’ uniforms (Ceremonies, competition, training and casual) and accessories can only have one type of wordmark: “OAR.”

3. Print size for words “Olympic Athlete from” should be equivalent to the word “Russia” and above the word “Russia.” The size of these words should be proportional to the area in which they are placed and will require individual approvals from the IOC.

4. Wordmark fonts should be in English and as generic as possible.

5. Only single or dual color elements are permitted on uniforms.

6. Separate items of clothing cannot create a tricolor.

7. The colors used in uniforms, accessories and equipment may not be in exactly the same range as those used in the Russian Federation flag. It is suggested that these are darker in color.

8. Country coat of arms, NOC emblem and national emblem must be replaced with the distinct OAR logo.

9. The proposed OAR logo consists of the words “Olympic Athlete from Russia” written in red and creating a circle.

10. The OAR logo must not include a third color.

11. No national identifications design elements should be featured on the uniforms.

12. These guidelines are applicable to all athletes and team officials/coaches uniforms (ceremonies, competition, training and casual), accessories and equipment.

13. All revised uniform, accessories and equipment designs and production samples need approval from the IOC.



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Paul Caputo

Paul Caputo is a grown man who collects plastic ice cream helmet sundaes from minor league baseball stadiums because he likes logos that much. He is the author of the first book published by SportsLogos.net, The Story Behind the Nickname: The Origins of 100 Classic, Contemporary, and Wacky Minor League Baseball Team Names. He can be found on Twitter at @Count2Baseball and he maintains the Countdown to Spring Training on Facebook. Paul is a Philadelphia sports fan, but he's not so bad.