2013-09-06 15.37.18

IOC

Who do you love?

BUENOS AIRES — As circuses go, this one is most excellent. The question: who will be the next ringleader and where is the next tent to be pitched?

Here Friday morning in the corner of the Hilton Hotel lobby one could see Thomas Bach of Germany, the International Olympic Committee vice president running for the top job, talking very, very quietly with Cuba’s Reynaldo González López.

Two-time fencing silver medalist Yuki Ota (far left) and the Tokyo 2020 bid team

Two-time fencing silver medalist Yuki Ota (far left) and the Tokyo 2020 bid team

2020 Bid Cities

2020: playing the safe card

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia — Tokyo 2020′s Yuki Ota, a two-time silver medalist in fencing, bounded across the stage and said to the crowd, with enormous energy and enthusiasm, “It is great to be back in St. Petersburg,” where he had competed in 2007. Everyone laughed, and he had them from there as he said, “I can promise that Tokyo 2020 will see your sports shine.”

A few moments later, Jaime García-Legaz, at the lectern for Madrid 2020, tackled the pink elephant in the room head-on — the Spanish economy. His nation’s minister of commerce and international trade, García-Legaz noted that the International Monetary Fund and others project “steady” economic growth for Spain in the next five years, adding, “The fundamentals of the Spanish economy are strong and deep.”