Finland honors gold medalists

Finland honored its Sochi gold medalists on this stamp issued March 3.

By Denise McCarty

Finland’s Itella Posti issued a stamp March 3 to honor its two gold medalists at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Winter Games, cross country skiers Sami Jauhojarvi and Iivo Niskanen. They won the gold Feb. 19 in the men’s team sprint classic, finishing in 23 minutes, 14.89 seconds.

The nondenominated first-class stamp shows Jauhojarvi and Niskanen holding their gold medals. Antti Aimo-Koivisto took this photograph at the Sochi medal ceremony.

Inscribed in gold on the right side of the stamp design are the words “gold medal” in Finnish and Swedish followed by the athletes’ names. Below the inscriptions are images of Finland’s flag and the Olympic rings and the country name “Finland. The country name in Finnish (“Suomi”) and the first-class designation are on the left side of the design.

“I never would have believed I’d end up on a stamp,” Jauhojarvi said. “At the Olympic Village, I had a personalized stamp made of myself, but it is incredible to have an official stamp now. I’ll probably get recognized more often now.”

Niskanen said of the honor: “It feels incredible to get my own stamp. The stamp makes one feel like an important person and part of sports history.”

Ari Lakaniemi and Susanna Rumpu designed the stamp. This self-adhesive stamp was produced in panes of 10, in the same format as Finland’s personalized stamps. A total of 250,000 were printed.

The web shop of Itella Posti is www.posti.fi/goshopping. Ordering information also is available from Itella Corp., Philatelic Center, Box 2, 00011 Itella, Finland; and from Finland’s new-issue agency in the United States, Nordica, Box 284, Old Bethpage, NY 11804.

 

Published 2/28/2014 11:57 AM