IOC member mulls possible 2030 French Olympic Winter Games bid

France has a “small chance” to host the 2030 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, French International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Guy Drut said Tuesday according to L’Equipe.

French Alps

But first, Drut said, candidacies from the Northern Alps and Southern Alps must work together in a single bid.

“If we succeed, we have a small chance, a chance, to get them,” Drut, who has been instrumental in landing and organizing the Paris 2024 Summer Games, said.

“If the request is made only by the Southern Alps, it will not work. We need a bid bringing together the Southern Alps and the Northern Alps.”

Drut said fellow French IOC member and five-time Olympic biathlon champion Martin Fourcade was also behind the possible project.

The French Olympic Committee has yet to be connected to any official bid plans though the IOC said “more than six regions” have discussed interest in hosting future Winter Games. These are believed to include recent additions Sweden and Switzerland along with Vancouver in Canada, Sapporo in Japan and Barcelona in Spain that have since stepped back to deal with domestic support issues. Salt Lake City is focused on hosting in 2034 but officials say the U.S. city would stage the event in 2030 if requested by the IOC.

In January, France was briefly rumored to be connected to a European super bid along with Switzerland and Italy – but the notion was quickly dismissed by Chamonix-Mont-Blanc Mayor Éric Fournier who said such a plan was not on the agenda. Those plans quickly dissolved.

Participation by Chamonix would likely be a key component to a French bid.

There is no set timetable for the election of a 2030 host, but the IOC has hinted that a decision may be made next year.

France hosted the Winter Games three times including Albertville in 1992, Grenoble in 1968 and Chamonix in 1924. The nation’s latest bid was by Annecy to host the 2018 Games but it was soundly dismissed after receiving only seven of 95 possible first round votes behind Munich in Germany and eventual winner PyeongChang in South Korea.

A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.

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