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Olympic bid decisions - the good, the bad... the fails.


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Manchester had already been eliminated by the time Samaranch even opened the envelope. So you guys should've already known that Manchester had lost, or did they not announce who was eliminated after each round back then.

I missed that time.

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It's really disheartening for any city that put its heart and soul into it. Which is why it's NO joke to take it lightly and sometimes you often ask how much more punishment can a city take and how m

Do I understand you correctly: You draw a line between the Salt Lake bribery scandal and the fact that South Africa spent the whole night covering their loss? That would be hardly possible, because as

In my view (and the view of a Swiss member of the IOC who I once met!) London won for three main reasons: (i) Seb Coe's leadership of the bid team. The fact of the matter was that most members of the

That picture of people from Leipzig is fake right? Because they didn't even get shortlisted.

No, it's a real picture. They had an open air party with a big screen at a place in Leipzig, the Nikolaikirchhof, on May 18, 2004 on which they broadcast the IOC's shortlist announcement press conference live. That's where that picture was taken.

Perhaps it's from when they learned that they didn't make the 2012 short-list.

True.

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Wow, I don't remember that. Just goes to show how wrong a choice that was from Germany. The fact they had a stage set for the shortlist announcement seems a bit small-time.

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Manchester had already been eliminated by the time Samaranch even opened the envelope. So you guys should've already known that Manchester had lost, or did they not announce who was eliminated after each round back then.

I believe it was not announced back then. That was the same race in which Berlin participated - and I still remember how disappointed I was when I watched the live broadcast of the announcement on German TV and Samaranch said "And the winner is... Sydney". So I apparently didn't know before the announcement that Berlin hadn't made it to the final round of voting.

You must keep in mind that back in the days, the host city voting took place behind closed doors. There was no such thing as those electronic voting devices and live broadcasts from the vote yet. There was even a time, I believe, when also the bid presentations took place behind closed doors. In 1993, when the IOC chose the 2000 host, the latter apparently wasn't the case anymore - since I remember seeing excerpts of Sydney's presentation in Monte Carlo on YouTube. But the voting took place behind closed doors - and so probably it wasn't even announced officially after each round of voting which city had been eliminated.

But correct me if I'm wrong.

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I always thought the IOC missed a big chance to promote smaller city when they didn't select Leipzig in the shortlist.

It was never going to win anyway, but it would have been nice to see a bid from the german. It probably would have give people some ideas to smaller cities (and big ones) on how to produced a good, green and realistic bid in terms of Budget.

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Wow, I don't remember that. Just goes to show how wrong a choice that was from Germany. The fact they had a stage set for the shortlist announcement seems a bit small-time.

Not really. They wanted to stress that they really wanted the Games or at least wanted to get shortlisted. So they didn't choose a low key "OK, we'll watch the press conference in our bid headquarter offices and exclude the general public" but wanted to make it a public celebration - with positive pictures of enthusiastic and jubilant people in case that Leipzig got shortlisted. That would probably have been nice additional material for the bid book respectively the promotional films as a candidate city, right up to the host city election in Singapore in 2005.

Correction: "So they didn't choose a low key "OK, we'll watch the press conference in our bid headquarter offices and exclude the general public" approach..."

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Oh, alright then. :D

But if you're going to do something like that, make damn sure you shortlist! The only thing sadder than that photo is French rugby fans still wearing knitted cockerels on their heads after their team has lost.

image.jpg

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But if you're going to do something like that, make damn sure you shortlist!

Well, with that rationale, you should also refrain from staging an open air party for the host city election when your city actually stands no chance in the election (like Annecy in 2011). Why should you only include the general public if there's a guaranteed victory?

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If you lose to an eventual host city and have to cancel you're party, that doesn't look too bad. Cancelling your party because you couldn't even get on the list of cities the IOC deems capable looks pretty sad by comparison. We might have to agree to disagree.

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I believe it was not announced back then. That was the same race in which Berlin participated - and I still remember how disappointed I was when I watched the live broadcast of the announcement on German TV and Samaranch said "And the winner is... Sydney". So I apparently didn't know before the announcement that Berlin hadn't made it to the final round of voting.

You must keep in mind that back in the days, the host city voting took place behind closed doors. There was no such thing as those electronic voting devices and live broadcasts from the vote yet. There was even a time, I believe, when also the bid presentations took place behind closed doors. In 1993, when the IOC chose the 2000 host, the latter apparently wasn't the case anymore - since I remember seeing excerpts of Sydney's presentation in Monte Carlo on YouTube. But the voting took place behind closed doors - and so probably it wasn't even announced officially after each round of voting which city had been eliminated.

But correct me if I'm wrong.

No, you're not wrong. I was in Manchester watching the announcement on a big screen and none of us knew that Manchester had already been eliminated, like Berlin. We all held our breath until Samaranch made the announcement and only then did we know that Manchester's bid had failed.

I'm not sure at what point the IOC became more public and transparent with the voting process. I'm guessing it occurred only after Rogge took over from Samaranch so maybe it first happened with the 2012 election in Singapore in 2005? Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Edited by Mainad
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I think you're right that there were no announcements to the public between rounds. The Sydney story for the 2000 vote was that they had a deal with a friend of the bid, Flor Fonseca of Venezuela, that if Sydney had made it to the final round she would wear a special scarf when she came into the announcement session to let them know - and she did. Until then, according to Coates (who wasn't on the IOC then) and McGeoch and others from the bid team, they were in the dark about whether Sydney was still alive in the vote or not.

When they opened the proceedings to full public round by round announcements I don't know.

Edited by Sir Rols
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CNN back in 1997 during their coverage of the 2004 decision announced mid way through their recap that a source had told them it had come down to Athens and Rome. Whether or not this was mere assumption, they announced it prior to Samaranch announcing the Greeks had it (whoops - sorry - spoiler alert!!).

Just some other points -

I was in Monaco for the 2000 announcement and we did see the presentations there via closed circuit TV. I was told later the Sydney presentation was shown in full (delayed yet prior to the announcement) in Australia. Rols' scarf story is true - tied to the bag if not in the final 2, around the neck if in the final 2.

I was also in Tokyo in 1990 for the 1996 announcement. Melbourne was the highest rated technical bid followed by Toronto, Atlanta, then further back Manchester and Athens followed a long way back by Belgrade. The general belief within the bid team was Melbourne or Athens would probably get it and probably within the first or second round. Seriously. Thus Melbourne put up good numbers before preferences kicked in. Ron Walker made a comment to me (off the record) much later that Melbourne's main concern was Toronto and thus they put all their energy into securing the Latin bloc (which came through big time for Sydney) and assumed Africa was with Athens and the Asians were with Toronto despite the lure of a "localised Games". He (like many) didn't really expect Atlanta to garner many votes at all... It must be said the Atlanta bid team were everywhere in Tokyo and were frankly great salespeople. They got pretty much all the later preferences and that won it for them.

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Nagoya's actually Japan's 3rd largest urban area. It's very capable of pulling off the Games, plus there's also big corporations, like Toyota, headquatered nearby. It's more comparable in urban size to many 2nd-tier U.S. metro areas.

Nagoya actually had a decent shot for 1988, since they were only competing against Seoul. Lille & Leipzig, OTOH, were competing in a field which had too many heavyweights, TBW. Plus, those areas are still much smaller than Nagoya's. The Japanese equivalent to those are more like Hiroshima & Fukuoka. Hiroshima wanted to be the Japanese bid these last two attempts. Needless to say, the JOC wisely chose the obvious contender of Tokyo.

Better examples then are Seville, Birmingham maybe.

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Quebec City 2002 losing lol

3 years later, the IOC found out that such victory was a bribery one, which led to the Ethics commission establishment

Another reason why South Africa spent the whole night covering their loss, just like Rome, Buenos Aires, and Stockholm did in response to Athens's victory

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Melbourne was the highest rated technical bid followed by Toronto, Atlanta, then further back Manchester and Athens followed a long way back by Belgrade.

Hmmmm, well, this newspiece here (& I've also read others that stated the same) mentions that Atlanta's bid got rated the highest, & Athens' the worst by the IOC Evaluation Commission.

Atlanta's bid was rated the highest, & Athens' the worst by the IOC Evaluation Commission.

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1990-09-18/sports/1990261072_1_olympic-committee-ballot-ioc-member

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Hmmmm, well, this newspiece here (& I've also read others that stated the same) mentions that Atlanta's bid got rated the highest, & Athens' the worst by the IOC Evaluation Commission.

Atlanta's bid was rated the highest, & Athens' the worst by the IOC Evaluation Commission.

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1990-09-18/sports/1990261072_1_olympic-committee-ballot-ioc-member

FYI, how does the saying go? Losers get to rewrite history! :lol:

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3 years later, the IOC found out that such victory was a bribery one, which led to the Ethics commission establishment

Another reason why South Africa spent the whole night covering their loss, just like Rome, Buenos Aires, and Stockholm did in response to Athens's victory

Do I understand you correctly: You draw a line between the Salt Lake bribery scandal and the fact that South Africa spent the whole night covering their loss? That would be hardly possible, because as you mentioned, the Salt Lake bribery scandal was uncovered three years after Salt Lake becoming the 2002 host city, i.e. in December 1998. The election of Athens as 2004 host took place already in September 1997, however. So the defeated competitors of Athens can't have known about the Salt Lake bribery.

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While I'm not personally aware of any exact IOC method back then of ranking cities like it is today, I'd be willing to bet that if today's standards were applied back to the 1996 race, I'd put money on Melbourne or Toronto coming out on top.

Certainly, the Centennial Olympics would not have had any of the major logistical issues that were faced by Atlanta were they in Melbourne. The city barely flinched hosting the Commonwealth Games.

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For starters, I don't see how having one of the worlds busiest airports, even back then, wouldn't count as a huge part to any evaluation. Especially when most of the competitions airports only handled a fraction of the traffic by comparison.

And most of the glitches were the organizers fault. It had nothing to do with the city itself. Had the organizers focused more on the actual organization, instead of Billy Payne trying to get the biggest bucks outta the deal by trying to get every corporation involved everywhere he could (when they said it wasn't going to be all about the money "like LA was" when they were first bidding) then most of those headaches could've been avoided. It's a shame really, cuz they really could've done a much better job had they had their priorities where they should've been.

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While I'm not personally aware of any exact IOC method back then of ranking cities like it is today, I'd be willing to bet that if today's standards were applied back to the 1996 race, I'd put money on Melbourne or Toronto coming out on top.

Certainly, the Centennial Olympics would not have had any of the major logistical issues that were faced by Atlanta were they in Melbourne. The city barely flinched hosting the Commonwealth Games.

Had the Centennial Olympics been held in Melbourne, there would have been minimal upgrades with regards to what was back then an adequate transport system for a population of 3 million (before privatization of the public transport network). We simply made do with our on going road projects and our existing rail and extensive tram and bus networks.

Our centralized rail network with rail lines ending up in the city was effective at the time where passenger numbers were adequate and not the large numbers we have now, especially at peak times. The problem of course now is that more rail services would be at the expense of motorists who would be stuck at railway crossings and such. But in 1996, it would have been sufficient, even if just adequate.

Melbourne Airport was undergoing expansion anyways to handle ever increasing traffic. Avalon Airport (a mere airfield back then) was also touted as a potential site to serve as Melbourne's 2nd International Airport, which would have become as such (much earlier than it is now) if needed be, where Melbourne Airport alone wouldn't have been able to cope with expected Centennial visitor numbers.

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But you know NOT everyone looks at the past editions. Just glanced at the transcript of the talk given by London 2012 Opennig ceremony screenwriter which Volshy was gracious enuf to provide...and he (Boyce) said that he did NOT consult or even view previous Ceremonies. Huh? How stupid can that be??* So, it's like that for the bid books as well. Unless they get ahold of a digital copy, only about (what? u're the bid book expert) 150 copies are laying around??

*Anyway, back to the Frank Cottrell Boyce NOT even viewing previous Ceremonies, no wonder London looked shabby and clueless at the same time; and then excused by its defenders as ".. veddy British." No; it was simple laziness and smugness. Not looking at and learning or improving from past Olympic editions.

Bill Gates: "Good artists copy, great artists steal."

Steve Ballmer: "Who said that?"

Bill Gates: "I dunno, some artist. I think it was Van Gogh." - it was Picasso

Quebec's book was simply bland, when it could have easily been neat and flashy like Sydney's bid book not to mention the whole look of their bid. Juan Antonio Samaranch himself stated that he always looked forward for the next article to come from the Sydney bid team. Without even opening whatever it was he knew the document would be interesting and exciting just by the look of the cover.

ehhh...shudda..cudda. :rolleyes:

Which is why even the USOC is wise enough not to bid with an upstart no name city like Atlanta. Especially one that would definitely cause transport problems.

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Which is why even the USOC is wise enough not to bid with an upstart no name city like Atlanta. Especially one that would definitely cause transport problems.

Well, it was either that or "no name" Minneapolis for 1996. Which would you have preferred.

And like Dick Pound mentioned about the decision: "the IOC had to make a choice, of whether we wanted to look back, or look forward for the Centennial. We decided to go forward". :-P

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