Canada could bid for 2022 Winter Games
Canada isn't likely to bid for the 2018 Winter Olympics, but the Games four years later are a possibility, according to the chief executive officer of the country's Olympic committee.
Chris Rudge, CEO of the Canadian Olympic Committee, told 24 Hours in Vancouver that one of the best ways to develop Canada's athletes is to host major sporting events.
"I think that our general belief is that '22 is not unrealistic," said Rudge.
Rudge added that there remains strong interest in having Quebec City as a potential candidate.
"Quite frankly, knowing the charm of Quebec City, it would certainly be a tremendous environment in which to host a Winter Games," he said.
The International Olympic Committee formally opened the bidding process for 2018 last week, and national committees have until Oct. 15 to propose their host candidates.
Potential candidates include Annecy, France; Munich, Germany; and Pyeongchang, South Korea, which is entering for a third straight time.
The 2014 Games are being held in Sochi, Russia.
Rudge said if the decision is made to bid for 2022, any Canadian city will be eligible to submit a bid to the COC for consideration, which is the normal process.
The COC broke from its regular bid process when it decided that Toronto would bid for the 2015 Pan Am Games, which are expected to be awarded by the end of this year. Rudge called that a strategic decision made on the basis that a bid from the area would help develop badly needed resources for summer sports.
The Pan Am bid is also seen as a way to prepare Toronto to host a Summer Olympics.
But Rudge said the discussion around whether the next Games bid from Canada should be for summer or winter would depend on whether the bid was winnable.
"We've gone twice in Toronto and lost. We've had more success attracting Winter Games and perhaps one of the reasons is we have such a good track record of hosting Games," he said.
"There may be a preference to give us the winter over summer, I don't know. We haven't put ourselves in a position yet of choosing one or the other."