Rome 2024 Hopes the Appointment of 17 “Champion” Ambassadors Will Help Elevate Olympic Bid

Rome 2024 announced Thursday a lineup of 17 ambassadors who support Italy’s bid for the 2024 Olympic Games. The list includes includes those from film, music, fine dining, art and business.

Rome 2024 AmbassadorsIn a joint statement the members of the group emphasized their pride in Rome’s candidacy for the 2024 Games calling Rome 2024 “an opportunity we can’t miss out on, and a chance to leave an important legacy for the city and the entire nation”.

The eleven cities featured in Rome’s bid include Florence, Naples, Palermo, Cagliari, Milan, Verona, Genoa, Bologna, Bari, Turin and Udine. Rome 2024 says they offer eleven outstanding settings to heighten the bid’s appeal.

Those from the world of business supporting the bid including Giorgio Armani, Guido Barilla, Alessandro Benetton, Giovanni Ferrero, Marco Tronchetti, Andrea Agnelli, Alberto Antinori and Nerio Alessandri, commented, “the Eternal City must be ambitious, as its history is unparalleled and it has played a timeless role in the world of sports. No goal is too high.  This is an extraordinary opportunity to highlight our traditions and give the next generation the kekys to the future by developing a transparent and low-cost project”.

Rome 2024's launch ceremony at the Palazzo Dei Congressi on February 17, 2016 (Rome 2024 Photo)

Rome 2024’s launch ceremony at the Palazzo Dei Congressi on February 17, 2016 (Rome 2024 Photo)

The artists supporting Rome’s bid include Roberto Benigni, Andrea Bocelli, Monica Bellucci, Massimo Bottura, Ennio Morrricone, Riccardo Muti, Laura Pausini, Paolo Sorrentino and Giuseppe Tornatore.  The group commented, “the 1960 Games were extraordinary and revolutionary; they opened a new dimension for the Olympics and transformed the city, rendering it even more beautiful and efficient.  Rome’s 2024 bid can have a similar effect, putting our capital city and nation back on the global map.  The Olympic Games are the ultimate and most significant interpretation of sport – a powerful instrument for social, cultural and urban growth.  Rome 2024 is destined to create a new vision for development, one we must pursue without hesitation.  We need courage, passion and optimism”.

Rome officials will hope the myriad of popular famous backers will encourage Italian citizens to throw their own support behind the bid.  After the election of Olympic bid opponent Mayor Virginia Raggi, the bid could face a referendum if an earlier municipal decision not to go to a vote is reversed.  Or worse for Olympic dreamers – the mayor could withhold her support altogether leaving a gaping weakness when the bid files a new document with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in October.  That document, a second of three bid books required by IOC evaluators, will demonstrate the level of government support being afforded to the project.

Rome’s competitors for the 2024 Games include Paris, Los Angeles and Budapest.  The host city will be elected by the IOC in September 2017.