POSTED: May 25th 2011

Korean official plays down PyeongChang as favorite in 2018 bid race

Sun-Kyoo Park, Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism / lake images
Sun-Kyoo Park, Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism / lake images

LAURA WALDEN / Sports Features Communications

TAMPA/SEOUL, May 25: According to the Korean vice minister of culture, sports and tourism Sun-Kyoo Park, the PyeongChang bid is not the frontrunner in the campaign to host the 2018 winter Games. Just days after the key International Olympic Committee (IOC) technical briefing held in Lausanne last week the official spoke to the press and was quick to reel in the image that the city is ahead in this very high stakes race.

Park spoke out as he felt that both the South Korean and international press have dubbed PyeongChang a front-runner in the race and tried to issue the reminder that all three candidates had excellent chances to win the vote to host the Games.

In statements in the Korean press he said, “Munich, Germany has a strong bid and Annecy, France has started ramping up its bid lately and demonstrated its advantages during the IOC meeting in Lausanne.”

“We are doing our best to win in Durban on July 6th but it is too early to say that we are ahead of the other candidate cities.”

 The vice minister also praised Munich’s team, environmental points and wealth of experiences and their ability to host elite level events. He also mentioned that Annecy has been making major strides under their new leader, Charles Beigbeder.

Park emphasized that “We're trying to identify our shortcomings from the two failed bids and to learn from them. We're making every effort to ensure PyeongChang's victory in Durban on July 6."

The last time that Asia hosted the winter Games was '98 Nagano, Japan so it would make a 20 year stretch since the last time that they were on the continent.

With only 42 days left in the race the pressure is mounting and the bids are preparing for their last few visits to key IOC meetings. The IOC will meet in South Africa July 3-9 to hold their session and vote for the Games.  

Keywords · PyeongChang 2018 · IOC · Sun-Yoo Park ·

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