In September 2016, this column was first in the world to declare that the International Olympic Committee ought to declare a historic two-fer and allocate the 2024 and 2028 Summer Games at a single stroke.
The IOC did just that in 2017, though it reversed the order of the suggestion first made here — LA for 2024, Paris for 2028, instead awarding 2024 to Paris, 2028 to LA, the IOC’s Eurocentric sensibilities coming once more to the fore after a three-Games Asian swing (2018 South Korea, 2020 Tokyo, 2022 Beijing) even though LA is and will be all the more ready. In exchange for waiting for ’28, LA struck a killer financial deal.
Now the IOC’s so-called evaluation commission is on the ground this week in Sweden, the first of the two remaining candidates for the 2026 Winter Games — Milan is yet to come — and thus it is time for this column, taking stock of what is going on in Stockholm and beyond, and more generally in the Olympic bid process, to yet again be first-in-the-world with another so-clearly-obvious take of what-should-be:
Salt Lake City for 2034.
Not — repeat, not — 2030.
This after the IOC picks Stockholm for 2026.
And with Sapporo poised to emerge as front-runner for 2030.