Immensely rare unissued winner's medal from the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics. Bronze, 102 mm, 471 gm, by Leo Burnett Moscow. The front and reverse of the medal share a window with a polycarbonate crystal mosaic that features a ‘patchwork quilt’ of national designs from the various cultures and ethnicities of the Russian Federation. Additionally, the front of the medal shows the Olympic rings, and the reverse is engraved with the Sochi Games logo; the edge is likewise engraved in Russian, French, and English, “XXII Olympic Winter Games.” The medal includes its attractive dark blue ribbon, as well as its white wooden presentation box, with crack to reverse hinge area.
Based around the duality of nature, the Sochi medals depict the landscape of Sochi with the sun’s golden rays reflecting through a prism of snowy mountaintops onto the sandy beaches of the Black Sea coast. These magnificent prizes are the result of a national design competition organized by the Sochi Olympic committee, which requested that all formal entries be unique, modern, and, of course, Russian. Only a small number of spare medals—reportedly 46—were produced for the XXIIth Winter Olympiad to be awarded in the rare instance of a tie or draw. Coincidentally, the Sochi Games witnessed a pair of ties: Canada’s Jan Hudec and America’s Bode Miller tied for bronze in the Alpine skiing super-G, and Slovenia’s Tina Maze and Switzerland’s Dominique Gisin shared the gold in the Alpine skiing downhill, the first time a skiing event has had a joint gold medal. A truly exceptional medal from this memorable Winter Olympics, made all the more desirable by its elaborate craftsmanship and unique distinction of being an unissued winner’s prize.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.