USOC backs proposal for dual award of 2024, 2028 Olympics Games

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A top U.S. Olympic Committee official has welcomed the prospect of the 2024 and 2028 Games being awarded simultaneously, which would all but guarantee Los Angeles as one of the hosts.

The logo of the Paris candidacy for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games is seen on the Montparnasse tower behind the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, June 19, 2017. REUTERS/Charles Platiau

Earlier this month, the International Olympic Committee’s executive board recommended that hosting rights for both Games be awarded at the same time.

Los Angeles and Paris are the only two cities currently bidding for 2024.

No nations have submitted bids for 2028 but the U.S. has indicated it would be open to hosting the Games if they were not awarded 2024. France is also widely expected to take 2028 if the U.S. won the first Games.

“This obviously makes it more likely that both Paris and Los Angeles will be able to host the Olympic and Paralympics Games, and that’s a good thing,” USOC CEO Scott Blackmun told reporters on a conference call.

“There are going to be a lot of questions if they decide to go forward with a dual award because we haven’t done it before.

“So we are going to make sure we understand what the rules of engagement are and take a close look at it.”

The IOC is expected to announce its decision on whether to award the Games simultaneously in July.

The announcement of the 2024 winner is already confirmed for September.

Paris is seen as the frontrunner for 2024, with Los Angeles to host 2028 if the IOC decides on a dual award.

Blackmun also told reporters he was not concerned about USOC’s ability to market Team USA after it was confirmed last week that high-profile IOC sponsor McDonald’s had ended its 41-year-old deal with the global governing body three years early.

Beer giant Budweiser and bank Citi have also cut their sposorship ties with the USOC.

“We’re certainly not giving up on consumer brands and in fact we think that the value proposition is probably stronger now than it has been in a long, long time,” he said.

“It is only going to get stronger if we can announce an L.A. hosting of the Games. I’m confident we’ll have good partners going forward.”

Editing by Ian Ransom