|Page (1) of 1 - 08/22/11||email article||print page|
USOC officially out of the running for 2020 Olympics
The U.S. Olympic Committee has notified all interested cities that it will not submit a bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics.
Chicago, New York and Dallas were among those that had expressed interest in putting forth a bid to host the games, but any bid was contingent upon the USOC working out a long-simmering revenue-sharing deal with the International Olympic Committee.
USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky said Monday on Twitter that "I can confirm the US will not be bidding for the 2020 Olympic Games." He told The Associated Press the cities that had expressed interest were notified over the weekend that no bid would happen.
Countries have until Sept. 1 to submit the name of candidate cities.
"With such little time left in the process, we don't believe we could pull together a winning bid that could serve the Olympic and Paralympic movement," Sandusky told the AP.
There also was no process in place to select a city, as there was for 2016, when Chicago beat out finalists Los Angeles and San Francisco to become the U.S. representative.
The USOC's decision not to bid for 2020 means there will be at least a 20-year gap between Olympics in the United States. The last games on U.S. soil were the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics in 2002 and the last Summer Olympics were the Atlanta Games in 1996.
New York was, at one time, considered a favorite to host 2012, but it lost in embarrassing fashion. Chicago finished fourth of four finalists for the 2016 Games, and that humiliating loss was viewed by many as more a reflection on the USOC's relationship with the IOC than the city's viability as an Olympic host.
America's next chance to host an Olympics would be the 2022 Winter Games. Denver and the Reno/Tahoe area have expressed interest, though the USOC would put the same caveats on a bid for those games ' that there would be no attempt unless the revenue-sharing deal is worked out and the relationship with the IOC improves.
"I think it's one of the smartest things they could do right now to come to a good conclusion with the IOC on revenue sharing," said Steve Penny, president of USA Gymnastics, one of the country's most important, and successful, Olympic sports. "It's very important they get this revenue-sharing deal done the right way. Having an Olympic bid hanging over your head is going to change the way you think about one of the most important business decisions you're going to make for the USOC in the foreseeable future."
Since Chicago lost the bid to host the 2016 Games, USOC leadership had said there was only a very slim possibility of a 2020 bid and it would be tied to the USOC working out a deal on the contentious issue of whether the USOC would give the IOC more from the U.S. broadcasting and global sponsorship deals.
USOC leaders would not rule anything out, and the revenue negotiations were accelerated in recent weeks in the hopes of working something out in time to meet the Sept. 1 deadline.
But the IOC was asking for more than the USOC leadership was willing to give at this point in an arrangement worth hundreds of millions of dollars, even though the USOC has redoubled its efforts to be a better partner with Olympic leadership after years of a sometimes-fractious relationship.
The IOC will award the 2020 Games in 2013. So far, Rome, Tokyo, Madrid and Istanbul, Turkey, have announced they will bid.
There has been very little talk about the 2024 Summer Games, which won't be awarded for another six years.