POSTED: July 3rd 2013

Istanbul 2020 delegation arrives in Lausanne for 2020 Candidate Cities Briefing

CHAD WISE / Sports Features Communications

(SFC) An Istanbul 2020 delegation is in Lausanne, Switzerland, for the 2020 Candidate Cities Briefing for International Olympic Committee Members, hoping to capitalise on the recent hosting of the 2013 Mersin Mediterranean Games.

Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister for Economic and Financial Affairs Ali Babacan is leading the delegation and is joined by Turkish Minister for Youth and Sport Suat Kilic, International Olympic Committee Member and Turkish National Olympic Committee President Ugur Erdener, Istanbul 2020 Chairman Hasan Arat and Istanbul 2020 Chief Executive Officer Ali Kiremitcioglu.

“The Mediterranean Games has shown the sports world how much Turkey can achieve in just 18 months when we are united behind a common goal,” Arat said. “Now is our chance to show the IOC how much Turkey could achieve in seven years if we are awarded the honour of hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“There is a sense of fresh impetus in the Bid Committee and we are looking forward to this great opportunity to demonstrate our capabilities to the Olympic Family. Our commitment to bringing the Games to our country for the first time is now matches by capacity. We can be the Olympic Movement’s bridge to a new region, a new market and a new culture.”

Mersin was awarded the Mediterranean Games less than two years ago and TOKI – the state agency responsible for the construction of all Istanbul 2020 infrastructure – was able to deliver all of the Games’ venues in the 18-month span.

“Turkey can take a lot of pride and many valuable lessons from the Mediterranean Games,” Erdener said. “Now our task in Lausanne is to show the Olympic Family that we are ready to be the strong, effective partner they need to host an outstanding Games.

Our reputation as events hosts is growing all the time because we know how to put athletes first in Turkey. If Istanbul is awarded the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games it would be no different. All Games venues have been designed with athletes in mind, as we aim to provide the optimum conditions for elite athletic performance. Athletes will be inspired by spectacular venues filled with passionate fans and set against the stunning backdrops that only Istanbul can offer.”

Women’s tennis singles and women’s tennis doubles Gold medallist Cagla Buyukakcay and women’s volleyball silver medallist Neslihan Darnel will also be a part of the Istanbul 2020 delegation, along with Istanbul 2020 Sports Director Alp Berker, TOKI President Ahmet Haluk Karabel, and Istanbul 2020 Ambassador Gizem Girismen.

“It is really exciting to be in the Olympic Capital with the team, especially so soon after Mersin 2013,” Buyukakcay said. “Turkey put in a great performance for the Mediterranean Games and I was able to make a good contribution to the result – I am hopeful that it will be the same here in Lausanne. After the ANOC General Assembly, I am actually really looking forward to being on stage again and telling the Olympic Family how much hosting the Games means to young athletes in Turkey.”

Seven Turkish cities are also hosting the FIFA U-20 World Cup, which will conclude in Galatasaray’s Seyrantepe stadium 13 July. Seyrantepe stadium is one of the proposed Istanbul 2020 Football venues.

Istanbul and the other two cities bidding for the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Summer Games – Madrid and Tokyo – will learn of the International Olympic Committee’s decision as to which Candidate City will host the Games at the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires 7 September.

Keywords · Istanbul 2020 · Mersin 2013 · Turkey · International Olympic Committee · Olympics · Lausanne · Switzerland ·

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