IOC President praises U.S. but advises preparation for Boston 2024 Olympic bid

 

International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach has met with Boston 2024 bid chairman John Fish during a visit to the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) headquarters in Colorado Springs in which he praised America’s resurgence on the global sporting scene.

Bach, who has already met with former US President Bill Clinton during his visit, and attended both the Superbowl and the opening day of the International Ski Federation (FIS) Alpine World Ski Championships in nearby Vail and Beaver Creek, highlighted the fact that seven World Championships will take place on US soil this year.

He cited this as a good indicator of their willingness to host the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, although he warned much work lies ahead if Boston is to be successful.

“You have shown the determination of this great country to host the Games in 2024,” said Bach.

“You have to undertake all efforts.

“You have to get your team together.

“Then, you have to run with the absolute determination to win, but also to know that in the right moment, everything has to come together.

“What I have seen the past few days has made me confident that the US will make this effort.”

As well as Fish, Bach met the UCOC chairman Larry Probst and chief executive Scott Blackmun during his visit, as well as the Governors of both Colorado and Massachusetts and American IOC members Angela Ruggiero and Anita DeFrantz.

He also met athletes training at the nearby US Olympic Training Centre, including several from fencing, the discipline in which he won a gold medal at Montreal 1976.

Boston was selected as the official US contender for 2024 last month, beating off opposition from Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington D.C.

If successful, it would mark the first Summer Olympics in the North American nation since Atlanta 1996, and the first of any sort since the Winter Games at Salt Lake City in 2002.

Rome is the only other confirmed candidate to have so far entered the race, although Paris, Budapest, Istanbul, Doha and Baku are also considering bids, while South Africa is potentially preparing a nationwide bid in what would be an Olympic first.

Germany are also scheduled to put forward either Berlin or Hamburg.

The winning bid is due to be announced at the IOC Session in Lima in September 2017, with the deadline for applications coming on September 15 following the opening of an eight month long invitation phase by the IOC on January 15.

One potential concern for the US bid is the country’s perceived lack of integration into the Olympic Movement in recent years, but USOC officials are keen to point out that this is no longer the case.

The fact so many major sporting events are being held in the US this year – as well as other future events, including the General Assembly of the Association of National Olympic Committees in Washington D.C. in October and the World Games, awarded last month to Birmingham, Alabama, in 2021 – is a further indication of this effort.

“The USOC remains committed to an act of partnership with the IOC and the opportunity to spend time with [Bach] this week has been incredibly constructive for our team,” said Probst.

“Since his election in Buenos Aires 17 months ago, President Bach has worked tirelessly to develop and now implement Olympic Agenda 2020, to ensure that the Olympic Movement remains both important and relevant.

“The USOC intends to fully support and partner in that effort.

“Our selection for Boston as the US bid city to host the Games in 2024 is indicative of that commitment.”

This article was republished with permission from the original publisher, insidethegames.

 

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