Dec 4, 2013, 9:45 AM EDT
A likely U.S. bid for the 2024 Olympics might be rivaled north of the border, but a leading Canadian Olympic official believes a North American city would have a better chance in 2028.
“The way IOC does it, the games go to Europe, the Americas and then somewhere else,” Paul Henderson, former International Olympic Committee member and the Toronto 1996 bid chief, told the Toronto Sun. “And what most people don’t realize is that the IOC considers North and South America the same continent. Now there are always funny things once in a while that change that, but normally that’s the thought process.”
Rio de Janeiro hosts the 2016 Olympics. Tokyo hosts the 2020 Olympics. If a European city doesn’t win the 2024 Olympics, it will mark the longest stretch between hosting Summer Games for the continent ever, if Moscow 1980 is counted as a European Games.
Toronto came in second place in 2008 bidding, losing to Beijing, and third place in 1996, losing to Atlanta.
The Canadian Olympic Committee began looking into a possible Toronto bid in the 2020s in 2007.
The Toronto city council voted to investigate a 2024 Olympic bid in June 2012.
Canada’s largest city could look to follow in the footsteps of Rio de Janeiro, which hosted the 2007 Pan American Games and won the bidding for the 2016 Olympics two years later.
Toronto will host the 2015 Pan American Games. The IOC will choose the 2024 Olympics host in 2017.
“It could be a stepping stone to the Olympic Games,” then-IOC president Jacques Rogge told CBC in May 2012. “We’ve seen it with Rio, who organized the Pan American Games before being awarded the Olympic Games. I think that’s the same example. To stage well, a big event, that’s important because the Pan American Games is a big event. To stage it well would give a brand to Toronto that they are ready for other organizations.”
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