Madrid 2020 unfolds its charm in London

By Courtney Imel | 10:15

Once London 2012 has kissed the world good bye, the Casa de España is still dreaming with the joy and excitement lived at the competitions and hoping these feelings will be reborn in a new different place. Somewhere more familiar to Spaniards and with a wonderful climate. Aiming to spread and boost the condition of Madrid as a Candidate City for 2020 Olympics, at the Casa de España – located at  NH Harrington Hall Hotel – a stand has shared with visitors the hopes of a whole country. In a 20 square metre room where jamón and vino have not missed their place, some of the responsible people for the candidature have shared with sportsmen & women and people from different olympic commitees, making it more of a reason why Madrid deserves to host the 2020 olympics. 

Raúl Chapado, is Sport General Manager of Madrid 2020. He unveils for this blog the ins and outs of the candidature which has many possibilities of achieving success and aims to show the world the olympic passion of a sports-loving nation.

Madrid 2020 is starting their procces better than ever in its third olympic try.  

Madrid is the less-risky project. They are Games with very limited investment needs as most of the infrastructures are alreafy built, 84% of them to be precise. There are only 4 areas still to be developed and just some of the other ones need to be refurbished, i.e. the hippodrome. All the rest of the facilities will be developed on a temporal basis. We have made great efforts to reuse and adapt everything already built for the 2016 candidacy. We will make a rational use of resources and will create richness and happiness. Climate, passion and people’s support also make our candidature so attractive. In Madrid, sports are lived in a different way.

What are the weaknesses of Madrid 2020?

We have to keep an eye on the Spanish economic situation. Confidence and risk premium for investors are also valuated. In the last four years, we have lost external confidence. At this time, however, the IOC has no doubt that Madrid can fullfill all the necessary investments with a minimun risk, that are, anyway, really low. We have to be precise in order to obtain great rentability with low investment. 

What is the concern of the people from Madrid in relation to the candidature? 

Data from people support the candidature, despite being the third try for the city, it’s better for Madrid than for other candidates.  As of last January, we know some 75% of people in Madrid and 84% in the whole country support Madrid 2020. Even more, the ICO elevated this data and fixed it in a 78%. Things were the other way around for other candidates. Istanbul and Tokyo accounted for 90% and 95% of people support and ICO lowered them to 73% and 50%.

Despite that some years have passed by, nobody forgot the moment Prince Albert from Monaco asked the ICO at Singapore the poissoned question abut security guarantees, after ETA had blown up an artifact close to olympic stadium of La Peineta with explosives.

ICO has no doubts or concerns about security issues. In fact, it appreciates and valuates the experience and backgroup security forces had in Spain. It has never been seen any incident or menace in any international event in Spain, such as the 92 Expo or the Barcelona Olympics. Is not at all a weakeness point.

Doha and Baku missed the race. Now Istanbul and Tokyo as well as Madrid are the three standing competitors. What’s your opinion on them?

They are strong competitors. The competition is really adjusted as the are no really big differences. Each and every one of the three cities can hold the Games. Each one with the strengths and weaknesses.

Istanbul has a geostrategic position. It’s a really large bridge from West to East, with as interesting culture mix and is also really attractive for tourism.  Olympics have never been held on two continents at the same time and Istambul is open for this possibility. The Economy is powerful in the city but infrastructures and facilities are less developed compared to the two other candidates.

Tokyo is a strong yet compact project. With organizational skills that are out of any doubt. It has 43% of infrastructures already built. They are going to reuse facilities intended for the 2016 candidacy and the city is ready. 

What do you think is the key to ICO decision? 

At this reached point, knowing how to communicate the project and explaining properly what we want with these Games and what they are going to represent both for the country and for the olympic movement. Sometimes it’s better to reach touch the heart instead of rationality. Best thing about walking the same road twice is you learn new things. We are a real, strong, candidacy and the more explanations we give, the better. 

Now it’s waiting time. Till when? What are the marked dates?

We feature the dossier on 7th January in 2013. Evaluation meeting will be somewhere in March or April. Finally, on the 7th of September the thechnical presentation will take place, and then we will know the final decision.


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