Beach volleyball's non-stick sand? Canadian
It's not just ordinary Brighton Beach sand beneath the toned toes of Olympic beach volleyball players.
It is, in fact, Ontario-cured sand.
Since beach volleyball became an Olympic sports in 1966, Hutcheson Sand & Mixes of Huntsville, Ontario, has taken the fine-grained sand of choice and made it even finer and more perfect.
Canadian technology is why it doesn't stick to all those very exposed surfaces during a game.
For the London 2012 Games, the organizing company wanted British sand for the Horse Guards Parade showcase arena. They found the Redhill 28 sand they wanted in a quarry in Godstone, Surrey.
But then it was up to Hutcheson to refine the playing field, washing the sand and getting rid of any particles that might stick to or scratch those perfect bodies.
"Hutcheson provides sand that will not compact, thus performing under the best and most adverse weather conditions," the company promises.
The beach volleyball sand at the 2008 Beijing Games was a soft, fine product of Hainan province, a tropical island off China's southern coast. But it was still Hutcheson-treated.
The London Olympic organizing committee announced Wednesday that the 4,400 tonnes of sand trucked in for beach volleyball will be distributed among 36 new courts, mostly in the south of England, to capitalize on Britain's newfound fascination with the sport.