(ATR) Norwegian Olympic Committee president Tom Tvedt says that a Norwegian bid for the 2026 Winter Games is unlikely, despite a proposal and strong optimism expressed by Norway’s Telemark County.
Norwegian Sports Confederation President Tom Tvedt in Prague (ATR)
Tvedt tells Around the Rings
that there has not been any constructive dialogue between the Norwegian NOC and the municipal sporting committee of Telemark, the group proposing the bid.
“They are starting a process, thinking high and dreaming, but no we have not had a conversation,” Tvedt told ATR
at the ANOC General Assembly in Prague.
“This comes from the clubs, the region, the municipality,” he added. “They are very positive and they want to dream.”
“The situation in Norway is that the Norwegian Olympic Committee wants to host the Olympics and Paralympics, but it is very important that the whole sports family agrees and the government and parliament is positive to fund it and be with us in the process,” said Tvedt.
“If we are going to bid again in the future, we must know that everybody – the sports clubs, the municipality and the government is together.”
Norway’s capital Oslo bid for the 2022 edition of the Games before the ruling federal government party forced an end to the campaign when it refused to provide risky financial guarantees.
“We are always optimists, but we are also realists,” Tvedt said about potential future Norwegian bids.
Telemark’s municipal sporting committee leader Geir Berge told Norwegian broadcaster NRK on Monday that the county is preparing a bid.
“I can confirm that we want to bring the Winter Olympics to Telemark,” Nordtveit said.
Still, Tvedt would not offer his support.
“I need to be very clear – we need the whole population of Norway to want this one and if we want 2026 or 2030, we must work this way,” Tvedt said
Telemark County is located in southern Norway and has population of approximately 175,000. It is the home of ski pioneer Sondre Nordheim and its roots run deep in Norway’s winter sports culture.
Lillehammer hosted 2016 Youth Winter Games and 1994 Winter Olympics (ATR)
Tvedt noted that groups in Lillehammer, Trondheim and other Norwegian municipalities have previously showed similar aspirations, like Telemark, for a Winter Olympics bid.
“That is positive, but we need all the people of Norway behind it,” Tvedt stressed.
Telemark decided to throw its hat into the ring for the Winter Games after a referendum forced the Austrian city Innsbruck to abandon its bid, according to NRK.
International Ski federation president Gian-Franco Kasper said last week in Austria that he is not very optimistic regarding 2026 bids and hopes that at least one or two move forward.
Tvedt said a Norwegian bid for 2030 is somewhat more realistic.
“We must work on this – 2026 is coming fast, 2030 not as fast, but like the Summer Games, you can see the situation where the IOC finds two countries for 2026 and 2030.
“We must work with the Norwegian government in the future,” Tvedt added.
Norway has hosted the 1952 Oslo and 1994 Lillehammer Olympic Winter Games, as well as the 2016 Lillehammer Youth Olympic Games.
Written and reported by Brian Pinelli in Prague
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