On the eve of two years to go until the opening of the Olympic Games Paris 2024, IOC President Thomas Bach was in Paris on 25 July to meet French President Emmanuel Macron. The two leaders discussed the preparations for Paris 2024, and the seamless cooperation between the Organising Committee and the French government.
President Bach thanked the French President for his leadership and great commitment to the success of the Games. He also noted the enthusiasm of the French people for the Olympic Games, and the great inclusivity of the project. A recent report found an approval rating of 80 per cent for the Games, rising to 90 per cent among young French people.
The two discussed the proposed plans for the Opening Ceremony of the Games along the River Seine. President Bach expressed his full confidence in the security provided by the French authorities, which had been evident again during the very successful final stage of the Tour de France along the Champs-Elysées, which President Bach had attended the day before. The two leaders also discussed the current geopolitical situation.
On the eve of the two-years-to-go celebrations, President Bach also met the team from the Organising Committee led by Tony Estanguet, and had the opportunity to address staff at their headquarters. He told them: "You have a unique opportunity to present Olympic Games of a new era in Paris, in the home of our founder, Pierre de Coubertin." At the meeting, the Paris 2024 organisers unveiled their slogan for the Games: "Ouvrons Grands Les Jeux - Games Wide Open." Also present at the meeting was Jean-Christophe Rolland, IOC Member and President of World Rowing (FISA), who is a member of Paris 2024 Board of Directors.
President Bach has welcomed this new slogan, saying: “Paris 2024’s ambition to innovate the Games model in line with Olympic Agenda 2020 by opening up participation to as many people as possible is clear in this new slogan. The Opening Ceremony along the River Seine, competitions held in iconic locations across the city and Paris 2024’s far-reaching engagement activities will bring people together, both within and outside the venues, in person and online.” He continued: “This approach and narrative will be key to inspiring the next generation, allowing many more people in France and around the world to experience the Olympic spirit and values. This will help leave a lasting legacy beyond the Games in 2024.” Read the full news release about the Paris 2024 slogan here .
On 26 July, with exactly two years to go until the Olympic Games Paris 2024 begin, the IOC President expressed his sense of anticipation for a “new era” of the Olympic Games. Read his declaration here .
The IOC President was also in Paris on 24 July for the final stage of the Tour de France on the Champs-Elysées. After the finish, he was able to congratulate the winner, Danish cyclist Jonas Vingegaard, on his great performance. International Cycling Union (UCI) President and IOC Member David Lappartient and IOC Honorary Member Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark were also present, as well as the Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, and the French Minister of Sport and the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra. On this occasion, the President met Masomah Ali Zada, a refugee Afghan cyclist living in France, who was a member of the IOC Refugee Olympic Team for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
President Bach was in Krakow on 23 July to present the Polish Head of State Andrzej Duda with the Olympic Order in Gold, for his strong and consistent support for sport and the Olympic Movement. Under President Duda, Poland has hosted a number of World Championships, World Cups and other international sporting events, as well as the World Anti-Doping Conference in Katowice in 2019.
President Bach also commended him for his strong support of the Olympic Movement and the Olympic Games, as the only world leader to attend both the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 and the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, each time under difficult circumstances. In addition, President Bach thanked President Duda for his support for Ukrainian athletes and Ukrainian sport. Poland has been hosting many Ukrainian athletes since their country was invaded in February. Awarding the Olympic Order in Gold, President Bach described President Duda as: “a man who shares and supports our vision of building a better and more peaceful world through sport”.
The ceremony took place in the newly renovated room where the Polish Olympic Committee was founded in 1919. And it was also there that President Bach, President Duda and Polish NOC President Andrzej Krasnicki officially inaugurated the Olympic Club.
President Bach joined a Q&A session during the first edition of Athlete Town Hall . This online event, streamed live on 27 and 28 July, brought together Olympians from Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022, the IOC Athletes’ Commission members and athletes’ commission members from around the world. The participants talked about their Games-time experience, learned more about the support and advice available to them from the IOC and had a discussion on how Olympians can give back to their communities. (see also under ‘Commissions’).
The Athlete Town Hall moderator Jeanette Kwakye (athletics 100m, Great Britain), and panellists, Pita Taufatofua (taekwondo and cross country skiing, Tonga), Tzvetelina Todorova Taylor (beach volleyball, Bulgaria), Eliza McCartney (pole vault, New Zealand), Cynthia Appiah Serwaah (bobsleigh, Canada) and Gabriela Traña (athletics, Costa Rica), signed previously the Olympian Wall at Olympic House before being presented with their diplomas and OLY insignia by the IOC President. Also among the panellists was Richard Thompson who, along with the other members of the Trinidad and Tobago men’s 4x100m team from Beijing 2008, was recently presented with a gold medal at a Medal Reallocation Ceremony held at The Olympic Museum .
Before his trip to Paris, President Bach welcomed a delegation from the French NOC led by its President, Brigitte Henriques at Olympic House. They talked about topics of mutual interest, and in particular the preparations of the French athletes for the Olympic Games Paris 2024. In addition, foil fencer Astrid Guyart, who was part of the NOC delegation, signed the Olympian Wall at Olympic House. She won the gold medal in the women’s team foil event at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
This week, President Bach hosted Oman Olympic Committee President Sheikh Khalid bin Mohammed Al Zubair. The two men discussed the situation of sport in the country and the Oman athletes’ preparations for the upcoming Olympic Games.
President Bach met IOC Member Hong Zhang, who also chairs the IOC Coordination Commission for the Youth Olympic Winter Games Gangwon 2024, to discuss a number of Olympic topics.
The President discussed a number of topical Olympic issues with IOC Vice-President Ser Miang Ng and IOC Members Sergii Bubka and Jiri Kejval.
Also this week, President Bach presented diplomas and OLY insignia to Olympians Joao Antonio De Albuquerque E. Souza (fencing, Brazil), James Scherr (freestyle wrestling, USA) and Lauryn Williams (athletics, bobsleigh, USA), who all signed the Olympian Wall.
President Thomas Bach has been awarded the prestigious Naismith Legacy Award Trophy. The award is given “to players, coaches and other individuals or organisations from the game of basketball honouring their role in furthering the values of Honour, Respect and Integrity, both on and off the court”. The trophy was handed over virtually during the Global Sports Summit in Monaco which was presented in partnership with the Sports Innovation Lab of which the CEO is former IOC Member Angela Ruggiero. Past recipients include legendary Olympian basketball players Michael Jordan, Dirk Nowitzki and Alexander Volkov.
On Saturday 30 July, President Bach will attend the 2022 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships in Augsburg (Germany) with the International Canoe Federation (ICF) President, Thomas Konietzko.
Athletes from around the world gathered online on 27 and 28 July for the Athlete Town Hall – a first-of-its-kind event organised by the IOC Athletes’ Commission for Olympians who competed at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 and the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022. In addition to an exclusive Q&A session with the IOC President, day one also provided the chance to celebrate the achievements of the athletes who competed at Tokyo 2020 and Beijing 2022, and gather feedback about the athlete experience there. Taking place during a global pandemic, these two editions of the Games highlighted the strength of the athlete community as they overcame unprecedented challenges to qualify for and compete at the Games. The second day highlighted the support available to athletes through the IOC to help them make an impact in and beyond sport. An inspiring group of athletes were invited to share stories of how they are using their status as Olympians to deliver impactful work around the world. For more information about the Athlete Town Hall and the support available to athletes through the IOC, go to Athlete365 .
Olympians Allyson Felix, Alistair Brownlee, Oluseyi Smith and Masomah Ali Zada have joined the IOC Athletes’ Commission (AC) to help represent the athlete voice within the Olympic Movement. One of them, cyclist Masomah Ali Zada who was born in Afghanistan, is the first refugee athlete on any IOC commission. The four athletes were appointed by the IOC President, in consultation with IOC AC Chair Emma Terho, and in accordance with IOC AC regulations, which are aimed at ensuring a balance between genders, regions and sports within the Commission. They can each serve a term of up to eight years. With these additions, the IOC AC will consist of 14 women and 9 men. Full news release here .
Other Olympic news
With the approach of the Olympic Games Paris 2024, the IOC’s Olympic Studies Centre is not only collecting publications related to these Games, but is also fast finishing the process of digitising all the publications of the Organising Committees of past Olympic Games hosted in France, namely Paris 1900 and 1924, Chamonix 1924, Grenoble 1968 and Albertville 1992. The French Games digitisation project was undertaken in 2021 in the run-up to Paris 2024. So far, this includes more than 250 publications – invaluable resources that are now available at the click of a button in the Olympic World Library . Full news release here .
World Athletics has announced the results of its Athletes' Commission elections, which took place in Eugene (USA) during the World Athletics Championships Oregon22. You can find details about the six new Commissions members here . The outgoing and newly-elected members will participate in a handover meeting next November together with the continuing Commission members, currently headed by Renaud Lavillenie (Chair) and Valerie Adams (Deputy Chair).
At an Extraordinary General Meeting held virtually on 18 July, World Sailing approved in principle proposals to advance governance reform focused on ensuring accountable and efficient decision-making. The Member National Authority representatives voted unanimously that the Board should draft the detailed amendments to give effect to proposed changes to the Constitution tabled by the Board. The detailed drafting will then be submitted to the Annual General Meeting at the Annual Conference in October for final approval. Full details here .
During its meeting in Malmö (Sweden) on 26 and 27 July, the Executive Committee of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) decided to launch this year the inaugural ITTF Summit, which will bring together table tennis leaders from around the world to shape the future of the sport. Events at the summit will include the 2022 ITTF Annual General Meeting conference series, the Board of Director meetings, the Continental Council meeting and the Executive Committee meeting. Keynotes and workshops on sustainability and diversity will also be organised. More details here .
The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) has launched a new and improved GameTime video platform. It will allow baseball and softball fans worldwide to watch live and on-demand WBSC-affiliated events, from World Cups to National Leagues. Full info here .
The 2023 World Mixed Doubles and World Senior Curling Championships will take place from 22 to 29 April at the Gangneung Curling and Hockey Centre in the Republic of Korea. These championships will be held in the Olympic venues from the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018. Full info here on the World Curling Federation (WCF) website.
National Olympic committees
Barbadian Julia Broome (photo) has been selected for the 25 th edition of the Executive Masters in Sports Organisation Management (MEMOS) Programme, which will run from August 2022 to September 2023. The Barbados Olympic Association recommended her for both the MEMOS Programme and the accompanying Olympic Solidarity Scholarship. Broome’s 25 years of experience in sport and sports management made her an excellent candidate for the programme. As Chair of the Youth and Junior Commission, she is responsible for the development of volleyball for young children. She is also the Barbados Female Youth Volleyball team manager. She has been an executive member of the Barbados Volleyball Association since 2019, when she was elected as Assistant Secretary-Treasurer. Regarding her MEMOS project, Broome’s goal is to explore the use of technology to enhance the management of sports and national teams in Barbados. More info at www.olympic.org.bb .
The NOC of the Dominican Republic reports that the national handball federation recently organised its first national beach handball course. This is an important step in the development of this discipline in the country, with the purpose of training coaches and other support staff. The theory part of the course was held at the Albergue Olímpico Centre, with the practical part on the beach handball court on Malecón beach. More details here .
The Hellenic Olympic Committee is taking part in the European programme entitled GAMES, a 24-month project which started in April 2022 and will end in March 2024. Its objective is to improve gender equality in the key leadership and decision-making positions of the participating NOCs, by promoting structural changes in their governance, enhancing understanding of the existing cultural barriers and encouraging the NOCs to work with their member federations to create sustainable change. The GAMES project covers a consortium of European NOCs: Turkey, Greece, Belgium, Latvia, Ireland, Czech Republic, Germany and North Macedonia, as well as renowned experts in the field of gender equality and good governance, including Kari Fasting from “Equal Rights” and Rowland Jack from “I TRUST Sport”. Furthermore, the IOC will act as a key player in terms of promoting and disseminating the project deliverables across all NOCs worldwide. More details here .
Organising Committees for the Olympic Games
On 23 July, an event organised by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government (TMG) at the National Stadium marked the first anniversary of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 , paying tribute to all those that made them a success. As the first postponed Olympic Games, Tokyo 2020 faced unprecedented challenges. But they will be remembered for overcoming fear and disruption by promoting hope, solidarity and peace. “One year on since the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, we can look back and say with pride: We did it together. We did it for the athletes of the world,” the IOC President said in his video address to those attending the event. Full news release here .
The sports competition calendar by event and the first ticket pricing details for the Olympic Games Paris 2024 were released by the Organising Committee on 25 July, with just over two years to go until the Games begin. Athletes and fans can now find out what date and time each event will take place. Click here to see/download the full sports competition calendar by event. In all, 329 events will take place across 762 sessions between 24 July and 11 August. While the official launch of ticketing, including the full price list, will take place in December 2022, Paris 2024 has revealed some ticket information. More details can be found here . Read the news release here on Olympics.com.
Last weekend, people across Queensland marked 10 years to go until the Olympic Games Brisbane 2032 begin. A series of “Have a Go” events featuring Olympic and Paralympic sports, at some of the Games-time venues and other iconic locations, were held across Brisbane, Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. Encouraging people of all ages to get involved, the sessions featured several Australian Olympic and Paralympic athletes, who joined the celebrations as part of the Australian Olympic Committee’s “ Green & Gold Runway ” initiative. In addition to these activities, the Organising Committee is using the 10 years-to-go milestone to get “Brisbane 2032 Ready”, after outlining the planning and delivery stages that will be undertaken over the next decade. Full news release here .
A delegation from the Association of the National Olympic Committees (ANOC) led by its Secretary General Gunilla Lindberg, who is also an IOC Member, visited Seoul (Republic of Korea) to discuss preparations for the XXVI ANOC General Assembly and ANOC Awards 2022, which will be held from 18 to 21 October. The delegation met senior representatives of the Korean Sport and Olympic Committee, and also visited the relevant venues. More details here .
On 26 July, with two years to go before the Opening Ceremony of the Olympic Games Paris 2024, the President of the Association of the National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA), IOC Member Mustapha Berraf, addressed a special message to African Olympic and Sports Movement officials and African athletes. Read the full message here . In addition, you can find here an issue of the “ANOCA Newsletter” devoted to the Olympic scholarship programme set up by ANOCA to support athletes in their preparations for the Games in Paris.