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Winter 2026 Games: Innsbruck Comes in with an Across-The-Border Bid

6 Sep, 2017

By: Mary Helen Sprecher

At last check, Calgary was coming on strong with its campaign to host the 2026 Winter Olympics. Of course, A number of other cities have indicated potential interest in a bid; those cities include Ezurum, Turkey; Sion, Switzerland; Innsbruck, Austria; Sapporo, Japan (which hosted host in 1972). Stockholm, Sweden, has also indicated an interest; however, issues with funding and political disagreements about hosting have led many to think its chances are not good.

The latest ammunition in Innsbruck’s arsenal is the prospect of hosting Olympic speed skating across the border it shares with Germany, according to an article in Inside The Games.

Innsbruck’s bid committee has confirmed that Inzell, which lies a little less than 12-1/2 miles from the Austrian border, would be the preferred site for speed skating. Competition would be held at the Eisstadion Inzell which would allow the Games to stick to their promise of using existing infrastructure in a bid to cut costs

Bonus points: If approved, the measure would mean Olympic sports would be in the home country of current International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach.

The potential Innsbruck bid was finally made public; however, it must must first get past the significant hurdle of a public referendum on October 15 – the last thing the IOC wants is another bidding process like that of 2024, in which Rome, Hamburg and Budapest all backed out, and Boston, the original candidate city for the U.S., had to be replaced following pushback from its residents, who organized as #NoBostonOlympics.

Trivia point: Innsbruck previously staged the Olympic Games on two occasions, in 1964 and 1976. It stepped in to host the latter after original host city Denver withdrew following the first referendum to ever be held.

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