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  • Salzburg, Sochi Surge in 2014 Olympics Poll


    <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=5 align=right border=0> <TBODY> <TR> <TD> <TABLE cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=150 border=0> <TBODY> <TR> <TD colSpan=2><IMG src="/_images/articles/OldStories/2014powerindextest1.JPG"></TD></TR> <TR> <TD style="PADDING-RIGHT: 5px; PADDING-LEFT: 5px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 5px; PADDING-TOP: 5px"><SPAN class=caption><B></B></SPAN></TD> <TD width=12>&nbsp;</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>(ATR) The Winter Games bids of Salzburg and Sochi are picking up strength, according to the latest rankings in the Around the Rings 2014 Olympics Bids Power Index. The index is the world's only authoritative ranking of cities bidding for the Olympics.<BR><BR>Salzburg clearly is the city to beat at this early stage of the race, scoring 81 points, first among the seven cities in the race. The Austrian bid has pulled away from PyeongChang, South Korea, with which it was tied at 75 points in the initial index, compiled in August 2005.<BR><BR>PyeongChang is now in a solid second position, with 75 points.<BR><BR>Sochi, the Russian bid, is making a surge into undisputed third, with 64 points, up ten from the August 2005 ranking. <BR><BR>Jaca, Sofia, Almaty and Borjomi follow the order of the remaining slots in the survey.<BR><BR>The Power Index is the only authoritative ranking of its kind, based on visits to the cities, direct communication with bid officials and published information on the bids. <BR><BR>The 11-category ranking covers a range of technical points as well as more subjective areas, such as the ambience of a city or the last time an Olympics were held in the city or nation. <BR><BR> <TABLE class=content cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=0 width=500 border=0> <TBODY> <TR> <TD style="PADDING-RIGHT: 0px; PADDING-LEFT: 0px; FONT-SIZE: 13px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 3px; PADDING-TOP: 3px" vAlign=top align=middle colSpan=8><STRONG>Around the Rings 2014 Winter Olympics Bid Power Index, January 13, 2006</STRONG></TD></TR> <TR> <TD vAlign=top width=92> <P></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=47> <P align=center><STRONG>Almaty </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=46> <P align=center><STRONG>Borjomi </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=45> <P align=center><STRONG>Jaca </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=89> <P align=center><STRONG>PyeongChang </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=60> <P align=center><STRONG>Salzburg </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=42> <P align=center><STRONG>Sochi </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=49> <P align=center><STRONG>Sofia </STRONG></P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center bgColor=#d9d9ff> <TD width=92> <P>Accommodation </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>8 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>6 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center> <TD width=92> <P>Ambience</P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>8 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>5 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center bgColor=#d9d9ff> <TD width=92> <P>Bid Operation </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>4 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>5 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center> <TD width=92> <P>Games Cost </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>3 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center bgColor=#d9d9ff> <TD width=92> <P>Last Games </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>7 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center> <TD width=92> <P>Legacy </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>8 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>5 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center bgColor=#d9d9ff> <TD width=92> <P>Marketing </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>4 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>8 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>4 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center> <TD width=92> <P>Gov/Pub Support </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>9 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>8 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>6 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center bgColor=#d9d9ff> <TD width=92> <P>Security </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>4 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>5 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center> <TD width=92> <P>Transportation </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>5 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>8 </P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>5 </P></TD></TR> <TR vAlign=center bgColor=#d9d9ff> <TD width=92> <P>Venue Plans/Exp. </P></TD> <TD width=47> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=46> <P align=center>3 </P></TD> <TD width=45> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=89> <P align=center>7 </P></TD> <TD width=60> <P align=center>8</P></TD> <TD width=42> <P align=center>6 </P></TD> <TD width=49> <P align=center>5 </P></TD></TR> <TR> <TD vAlign=top width=92> <P><STRONG>POWER INDEX </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=47> <P align=center><STRONG>53 </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=46> <P align=center><STRONG>46 </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=45> <P align=center><STRONG>56 </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=89> <P align=center><STRONG>75 </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=60> <P align=center><STRONG>81</STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=42> <P align=center><STRONG>64 </STRONG></P></TD> <TD vAlign=top width=49> <P align=center><STRONG>56 </STRONG></P></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE><BR><BR><B>The 2014 Olympics Bids Power Index: City by City </B><BR><BR><I>(Current score/Previous score)</I><BR><BR><B>1. Salzburg</B> <I>(81/75)</I>: Perhaps the most compact, easiest to navigate plan for 2014, with existing roads and rail service going to all the mountain venues. A single Olympic village is planned. In their experience hosting winter sports events the Austrians are unrivaled among the 2014 cities. Salzburg's rating has climbed with better scores over the first Power Index in areas of accommodation, bid operation, marketing and government support. <BR><BR><B>2. PyeongChang</B> <I>(75/75)</I>: The South Korean bid is second in the survey, lagging Salzburg in accommodation, existing transport and experience in winter sport management. The bid's biggest handicaps may be political: both of Korea's IOC members face legal issues involving their businesses, one could face the loss of his IOC seat. There are also reports from Seoul that the working relationship between the PyeongChang bidders and the Korean Olympic Committee needs to improve. On the other hand, South Korea's Prime Minister says the PyeongChang bid is a national priority, giving the bid the highest marks among the seven cities for government support. <BR><BR><B>3. Sochi, Russia</B> <I>(64/54)</I>: Watch out for Sochi, which is making a steady climb as the government, Russian Olympic Committee and bid organizers all fall into place behind the bid, which has broken out of the pack of middling contenders. The bid still has some proving to do in accommodations and transport, despite its status as Russia's number-one summer holiday destination. Costs will to construct venues and infrastructure will be high. Most travel to Sochi from outside Russia will connect through Moscow.<BR><BR><B>4. (tie) Jaca, Spain</B> <I>(56/47)</I>: From a shaky start last year, Jaca is beginning to take shape organizationally and politically, improving nine points over its first ranking in the Power Bid Index, now in a tie with Sofia. The inclusion of Zaragoza as the center for ice events as well as the site for key infrastructure needs such as hotels and transport makes the bid stronger. Whether the much bigger city remains content with second billing to a mountain village remains to be seen. Jaca is behind most of the other cities in marketing its plans for the Games, despite experience with past bids. <BR><BR><B>4. (tie) Sofia, Bulgaria</B> <I>(56/52)</I>: Just over six months ago, with the leadership of the Bulgarian Olympic Committee in shambles, the prospect seemed distant that a bid from Sofia would have much credibility. Since then a new president has been elected, bringing needed stability to the committee. Sofia, which has tried before to win the Winter Games, presents a plan with snow venues well over an hour from the city and multiple Olympic Villages. Extensive construction will be needed, but legacy potential is high. Bulgaria is one of the three countries with a 2014 bid that has never hosted the Olympics. There also is no IOC member for Bulgaria following the expulsion in July of Ivan Slavkov, former president of the BOC. <BR><BR><B>5. Almaty, Kazakhtsan</B> <I>(53/53)</I>: After showing some promise last July at the start of the 2014 campaign, the bid from Almaty seems to have gotten stuck. Even an applicant city logo, supposedly ready months ago, has yet to see the light of day. The Almaty website, with a breathtaking view of the city snug against the mountains, still promises more information, months after launching. Awarding of the Asian Winter Games to Almaty in 2011 shows the importance of the area to winter sports, but the bid will have to pick up speed to run with the big boys at the front of the 2014 pack. No IOC member from Kazakhstan is a complication. <BR><BR><B>6. Borjomi, Georgia</B> <I>(46/43)</I>: Still last in the rankings, Borjomi offers what seems to be one of the more pristine and culturally interesting settings for the Winter Games. But as is the case with Jaca, a bigger city is at the real center of the Games, in this case the national capital of Tblisi, a two-hour drive from Borjomi. High legacy potential exists with the extensive construction needed for an Olympics. With two regions of the country home to separatist movements, security will be an issue to address. Borjomi is the third among the 2014 cities which will struggle internationally because it does not have an IOC member.<BR><BR><B>The Categories Explained</B><BR><BR><B>Accommodation:</B> <I>Quantity, quality</I><BR><BR><B>Ambience:</B> <I>Is the city comfortable, tourist-friendly, a pleasure to visit?</I><BR><BR><B>Bid Operation:</B> <I>Leadership, strategy and public relations</I><BR><BR><B>Games Cost and Finance:</B> <I>The projected bill for operating the Olympics and the infrastructure needed, unusual finance risks. Higher scores indicate lower costs.</I><BR><BR><B>Last Games in the Country:</B> <I>Years since last summer or winter Olympics. Higher the score, the longer since the games. Some credit could be given for recent Olympic bids. </I><BR><BR><B>Legacy:</B> <I>Impact of the Olympics in a city; sustainable venues</I><BR><BR><B>Marketing:</B> <I>The size and impact of marketing programs</I><BR><BR><B>Government &amp; Public Support:</B> <I>The commitment of government and populace for a Games</I><BR><BR><B>Security:</B> <I>Reputation and quality of security, perceptions of risk</I><BR><BR><B>Transportation:</B> <I>Ease of travel, multiple transport options, airports, quality of public transit, taxis</I><BR><BR><B>Your best source of news about the race for the 2014 Olympics is, for subscribers only.</B><BR>