POSTED: July 13th 2011

Rome, Madrid, Istanbul, Doha, Tokyo: 2020 Olympics race heating up as deadlines loom

2020 summer Olympics and Paralympics are next on the bid list as the campaign takes off  / IOC
2020 summer Olympics and Paralympics are next on the bid list as the campaign takes off / IOC

LAURA WALDEN / Sports Features Communications

TAMPA, Jul 13: The 2020 race to host the summer Games is gathering momentum as the first deadline looms on July 29th. Cities interested in bidding must submit to the IOC submission letters regarding WADA compliances and the Court of Arbitration and they must submit any requests to change the dates outside of the normal Games' time of July 15-August 31.

Rome was the first city to officially state their intentions to bid again after the 2004 loss to Athens and have been setting up their bid for several months.

IOC vice-president, Mario Pescante, is in charge of the bid and is actively working together with IOC members, Ottavio Cinquanta, Franco Carraro, Francesco Ricci-Bitti, and honorary member Manuela Di Centa.

Madrid mayor Alberto Ruiz-Gallardon has announced today that the city will be back for a third time presenting the plan to the Spanish Olympic Committee (COE) for approval on July 20th. He said to the press today, “Madrid has finished an extremely high percentage of the infrastructure needed for the organisation of the Olympics and Paralympics and can count on the experience of the previous two bids and the recognition of the Olympic family.”

Spain is struggling with the economic crisis that is hitting the euro zone of Europe and looking to use the Olympics to boost the economy.

Turkey's sports minister, Suat Kilic, spoke out today to CNN-Turk TV that “Inshallah (God willing), we will bid and fulfill requirements to the letter.”

Istanbul has the longest history of chasing Olympic Dreams through four consecutive failed bids (Sydney) 2000, (Athens) 2004, (Bejing) 2008 and (London) 2012 Olympics.

Olympic Council of Asia (OCA) President Sheik Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah spoke to Kyodo News, "I hear Doha have interest. This is what I'm hearing, but we don't have anything officially announced yet."

Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara is pressing for a second bid after the city lost to Rio for the 2016 Games. Speaking up to Agence France Press he said, “"There are things we must do. We will do this even if we have to do this twice, three times, four times. We will (campaign) as a national effort.”

Japanese Olympic Committee President Tsunekazu Takeda thinks they might be better off going for a bid more distant from the PyeongChang 2018 win. He talked to Kyodo News, "We should go ahead with our bid if an Asian city still has good chances for 2020, two years after the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang.

"But we may not if we can't picture ourselves winning after thorough examinations."

France has decided against a bid after the Annecy vote for 2018, the CNOSF issued a statement “There will not be a bid for the 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralaympics.

“The CNOSF in the future will support a candidate that respects the vision of the sports movement for the sport of tomorrow. It must be planned sufficiently in advance and be conducted in synergy with the sports movement, the Candidate City and the state."

Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit has also expressed interest right after the Munich. He said to Der Tagesspiegel, “Berlin is ready for the Olympic games. Berlin has all the requirements: The stadiums, infrastructure, hotel industry, the enthusiasm of people toward sports.”

Hamburg is also mulling the idea however the German Olympic Sports Confederation (DOSB) needs more time to open the German campaign to cities prior to the July 29th deadline, so it is doubtful Germany will rejoin this race. However 2024 could be a target.

The 2020 summer Olympic Games and Paralympics will be decided in Buenos Aires at the IOC session in 2013.

Keywords · IOC · 2020 Olympics · Olympic bidding

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