The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

First woman in space and four-time Olympic gymnastics champ among torchbearers for Sochi

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MOSCOW - The first woman in space and several Russian Olympic medallists are among those who will take part in the torch relay ahead of next year's Winter Games in Sochi.

Cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, who went into space in June 1963, was selected as a torchbearer along with four-time Olympic champion gymnast Alexei Nemov, three-time Olympic synchronized swimming champion Maria Kiseleva and other prominent athletes and public figures.

The Sochi organizing committee says 6,000 torchbearers have been chosen so far. The final list of 14,000 torchbearers will be revealed by the end of September.

Currently, the youngest torchbearer is 14 years old, and the oldest is 93.

The Olympic flame will arrive in Moscow on Oct. 7 and go on a 123-day relay covering more than 56,000 kilometres (35,000 miles). The Sochi Olympics will take place from Feb. 7-23, 2014.

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