2020 Olympic Bid Teams Showcase Athletes, Respond to Issues

Buenos Aires, Argentina – Bid teams from Istanbul, Madrid and Tokyo arrived in Buenos Aires this week in full campaign mode, anxious to present the benefits of their 2020 Olympic Games plans to all who will listen. Foremost, they’ve aimed to show off their human assets – their bid team and ambassadors – to media who have arrived from around the world.

But it seems there is not one right way to do this as each city has used a different style to tell the story of their athletes.

On Thursday, Tokyo paraded out a multi-generational mix of fourteen Olympians led by 1976 Olympic Volleyball Champion Yuko Arakida who is Chair of the Tokyo 2020 Athletes’ Commission. Together they signed an “athletes’ declaration” designed to support junior sport and promote drug-free play.

No Japanese Olympian has ever failed a doping test. When asked why this is the case, Olympic swimming Champion Daichi Suzuki simply explained “we have no desire to cheat.”

This point was emphasized in a non-subtle attempt to compare with doping records of the competing nations in the race. Just last month 31 Turkish athletes were found to have failed doping tests, and Spain has struggled with the same issue in the past.

The fourteen athlete ambassadors wore matching suits with every detail accounted for right down to the oval logo pins for the women, and rectangular pins for the men. While maybe trivial, the formal attire lacked a bit of warmth and didn’t seem appropriate for a group of athletes.

By comparison, Istanbul showcased two athletes Wednesday – one, tennis player