Rome leaders discuss 2024 bid with IOC President Bach
GENEVA (AP) The leaders of Rome's bid for the 2024 Olympics met with IOC President Thomas Bach on Wednesday to discuss their plans for bringing the games back to the Italian capital for the first time since 1960.
Bid committee chief Luca Cordero di Montezemolo and Italian Olympic Committee president Giovanni Malago also had a number of technical meetings with IOC staff.
The Italians traveled to Switzerland as part of the International Olympic Committee's new ''invitation phase'' for bid cities and potential candidates.
''It is great to see a city already taking advantage of the invitation phase, which gives us the chance to ask potential bid cities how they see the Olympic Games best fitting into their long-term social, sports, ecological and economic environment,'' Bach said.
Montezemolo, the former Ferrari president, was named as the bid leader Tuesday.
Italian Premier Matteo Renzi announced Rome's bid in December, two years after Italy scrapped plans to bid for the 2020 Games because of financial concerns.
''The first person to ask me was Renzi, who then passed the phone to Malago,'' Montezemolo said. ''I only said, `Yes,' because I felt like it was a project supported by the entire country. Otherwise I would never have accepted.''
Montezemolo will not be paid for the job.
Rome - which hosted the 1960 Olympics - and Boston are the only declared bidders so far for 2024. Germany will decide between Berlin and Hamburg as its candidate. Paris is also weighing a bid. Other possible contenders are South Africa; Doha, Qatar; Budapest, Hungary; and Baku, Azerbaijan.
The IOC will select the host city in 2017.