World of Sport

Former Olympic stadium to become groundbreaking theme park

World of Sport

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Ever fancied running against Usain Bolt, swimming against Michael Phelps or, er, trying to outdo Sergei Bubka in the pole vault?

No, us neither. But if you have, then you'll be fascinated to hear of a new plan to turn the ageing Olympic stadium in Barcelona into a state-of-the-art theme park which will allow you the chance to do exactly that.

The £18m project will use computer technology at the 1992 Olympic stadium - and several other venues - to give fans a "virtual experience" of just how much better than you the best in the world are at dozens of different sports.

"Visitors will be able to feel what it is like to be professional football players, run a smooth 100 meters against Usain Bolt, take part in any Olympic Games race recreated exactly as it was in reality and experience a medals ceremony," a statement said, adding that the best visitors at the park each day will be awarded gold, silver and bronze medals.

How all this will work exactly is as yet unclear. CNN reports that details of how the exhibits will work are "so far thin on the ground", but mention several images of how it might come together based on the promotional material which has been released:

"One image shows people strapped to horizontal machines that supposedly mimic swimming as a screen in front of them shows an Olympic-sized pool," the report says.

"Another shows a visitor in ski gear hoisted aloft in a wind tunnel apparently designed to recreate the experience of ski jumping."

When the park opens - theoretically as early as next year - some 7,000 people a day are expected to shell out the estimated £25 for a ticket, though many will be tempted to pay the £40 being asked for a premium ticket that allows you to play a game of basketball, football or run a 1,500m race.

1,500m! World of Sport will stick with that £25 ticket, thanks all the same.

And that sounds as if it'll be fine, as the theme park's promoted Francesc Medina insists that his "sportainment" experience will be for everyone - "even people with a beer gut," he added cheerfully.

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