Rio leads 2016 Olympics bid race

February 15th, 2008 - 8:32 pm ICT by admin  

Rio De Janeiro, Feb 15 (Xinhua) Rio’s Mayor Cesar Maia said he was not surprised with the fact that the city occupies the first position among all other bidders to host the 2016 Olympics in a ranking released by website, the Brazilian press reported Thursday. “I am not surprised with the positive appraisal of Rio de Janeiro, as the Pan American Games has boosted up our bid. This was said by several authorities of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and by presidents of international federations,” Maia was quoted as saying in the media.

The website, which specialises in bids to international sports events, attributed 60.81 points - called “BidIndex” - to Rio’s Olympic Games bid, beating Chicago (60.57 points), Tokyo (60.41 points) and Madrid (58.25 points) in the rankings. also stated that the Pan Am Games, held in Rio in July 2007, was one good reason for the IOC to choose the Brazilian city as an Olympic venue.

Another point that went in favour of Rio’s bid is the 2014 FIFA World Cup, which will take place in Brazil and will have the city’s Maracana Stadium as one of its most important venues, the website’s editor Robert Livingstone said.

However, in an interview to the local press, Livingstone admitted that the short two-year gap between the World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games is a challenge which the event’s organizers will find difficult to overcome, but stressed that it was up to the IOC to decide whether it would be a real risk or not.

The editor also said that a South American city has never presented any Olympic bid as good as Rio’s, and added that the continent still needs to improve its political power at the IOC to help during the voting process.

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