Park Sun-kyoo, Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, told a press conference that PyeongChang “is definitely not in first place” in the race for the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. But the senior South Korean sports official said Wednesday it is making efforts to finish first.
Park said, “I must confess that we’re not in the lead as many people have said. I ask you to consider that a fact”.
PyeongChang lost two previous bids to Vancouver and Sochi. The city is bidding against Munich and Annecy.
Park said that South Korean and foreign press have dubbed PyeongChang a front-runner in the race, but he said, “Munich is still strong and Annecy is also making its utmost effort in the bidding”.
He added, “We’re trying to identify our shortcomings from the two failed bids and to learn from them. We’re making every effort to ensure PyeongChang’s victory in Durban on July 6”.
Park said South Korea is a country that owes its development to the Olympic spirit, having used the 1988 Seoul Olympics as a launching pad toward international recognition, adding that if PyeongChang won the 2018 Games the South Koreans would once again come together and it would help the country grow even further.
He said, “we’re a nation that owes to the Olympic spirit and we want to pay it back. (The Winter Games) would be an opportunity for us to revitalize ourselves and become a major player in the world”.