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Friday, November 28, 2014

Sapporo Wants To Host 2026 Winter Olympics

Yep - the headline is correct. Sapporo, that wonderful city up in the northern Japanese island of  Hokkaido has announced via its mayor, that it wants to host the 2026 Winter Olympics.

Cool… Sapporo was the fist Japanese city to host the Winter Olympics back in 1972 so it can be done.

There's just one little problem… there are serious doubts that the JOC (pronounced 'Joke', but is actually the Japanese Olympic Committee) is even going to put in a bid to host these olympics.

According to Sapporo mayor Ueda Fumio (surname first), local residents and those in the rest of the Hokkaido cities and towns are behind the supposed Y404.5 billion (US/Cdn $3.44 billion) bid.

"Hosting the Olympic Games will lead Sapporo to a new stage and be a step forward to create the future of Hokkaido," states Ueda. "An atmosphere to proceed to the dream is being nurtured among citizens."

I assume Ueda, when he mentions "the dream" is not referring to some Miyazaki anime flick, and instead means "the dream of hosting the Olympics".

Ueda wasn't kidding about the local support - which is strange because usually mayors tend to open their mouth as though they actually know what the majority of people want, but really they are only catering to themselves and what they HOPE everyone wants. It's not their fault... not everyone gets asked. And if they did, not everyone would venture an opinion.

Back in October of 2014, the Sapporo city government revealed that a survey shows that 66.7 percent of residents were either "in favor" or "fairly in favor" of the bid.

Of course… one needs to know just how many people actually responded to such a question to get a proper gauge of what the people  REALLY think… unfortunately, that number wasn't available - at least not in any of the reports I saw.

But is this just the case of a mayor wanting to leave his mark? Probably, but Ueda DOES also have additional support, as the Sapporo Chamber of Commerce and Industry has also that Mayor Ueda bid on the Olympic Games.

The JOC has until sometime in 2016 to decide whether or not it should place an official bid for the 2026 Winter Olympics - so there is time. The IOC (International Olympic Committee) would not, however, announcing the winning bid until 2019.

I'll let you know then, okay?

Why wouldn't the JOC want to prepare a bid on behalf of the very genii (exciteable/energetic) Sapporo crowd?

Well… there are concerns that not only is Japan already hosting the 2020 Summer Olympics, but other Asian nations are also heavily involved in the Olympics… fearing that the already heavy Asian domination would cause the IOC to look elsewhere - even if Sapporo was the best choice.

What's going on?

Well, there are the: 
  • 2018 Winter Olympics -  Pyeongchang, South Korea;
  • 2020 Summer Olympics - Tokyo, Japan;
  • Remaining bidders for the 2022 Winter Olympics are: Almaty, Kazakhstan; and Beijing, China.
That's a lot of eastern participation.

While I won't even pretend to know anything about what the IOC prefers as a money-making scheme, the Olympics do play out quite heavily with advertising dollars and the North American market…. and there there is 14-15 hour time difference between the Olympics and its major viewing/advertising market.

That's just an opinion, and I could be way off on that. Obviously the IOC likes which ever country presents the best bribe to it. Allegedly. I have no idea how these sort of decisions are actually made. I do know, however, that I can be bought.

Anyhow… we'll have to see where this all leads… the IOC, amid complaints from the four European bids that dropped out of the 2022 Winter Olympic bidding citing cost overruns… has said that they will soon reveal plans to make bidding cheaper, easier and more attractive for future potential hosts.

That should mean the cheapskate nations from North American and Europe can try to bid again.

Now… does any of that concern you? No… not having bids from European or North American cities… that's cool… I just mean that there was concern that the bidding process was too damn expensive.

Really? What the hell is involved in a pissing, I mean Olympic bidding competition? How much payola is too much payola?

I think the REAL story is in finding that out. Bueller? Bueller? Anyone? Bueller?

And Andrew has just run himself over,
Andrew Joseph

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