By Amelia Fisher-Starzynski from Paris, France, May 14, 2017: IOC Evaluation Commission Visit, Opening speeches of Paris 2024 Co-Chair, Tony Estanguet, Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, Paris 2024 Co-Chair, Bernard Lapasset, French IOC Member Guy Drut, President of the CNOSF, Denis Masseglia given to the IOC Evaluation Commission at the start of their three day visit to Paris today (Sunday, 14 May 2017).
Paris 2024 Co-Chair Tony Estanguet
President, members of the IOC Evaluation Commission…
I’m particularly moved and proud to welcome you to Paris as co-President of this bid.
For someone who has been shaped by Olympism, it’s an incredible privilege.
I could not have imagined this moment in Barcelona in 1992 when I visited the Games for the first time with my family. I was 14 years old and a simple fan.
In so many ways, I feel that I have grown up with the Olympic Movement:
• Watching my brother winning an Olympic medal in Atlanta;
• Competing in four Games myself;
• Becoming an IOC Member.
Now, to be leading this extraordinary team, that includes such strong experience and such passion, is the greatest honour of all.
Our team has a new member: the new President of France, Emmanuel Macron.
He’s been a fantastic supporter of our bid from the beginning.
It’s not surprising since he is also one of those 17 million registered members of the French sport family.
Today he takes office, and he asked me to convey his warmest personal greetings to all of you.
President Macron looks forward to meeting and working closely with you in your visit.
He will be with us all the way to Lima and hopefully beyond.
From the President of the Republic to students like Claire Kieffer, a member of our Generation 2024 committee, who will tell you this morning about her work for the bid…
We are convinced that people are the strength of Paris 2024.
We are made for sharing and we have shared our project more widely than any bid before, through a massive process of public engagement.
Paris 2024 has been built as a truly collaborative project.
It has made our bid stronger and we know that our engagement with you over the next three days will make it stronger still.
We, all of us, share the same ambition: Games that will unite, inspire and ultimately help to build a better world through sport.
In the course of your visit, we are going to share our vision to achieve that goal, based on three components:
First, Passion, in other words, celebration.
Unforgettable celebration, in the centre of Paris, transformed into the most beautiful Olympic Park that anyone could imagine.
Second, Purpose, meaning legacy, based on plans that will deliver the most ‘Olympic Agenda 2020’ Games.
And legacy that has already begun, in education, with two million French kids, and of course in sustainability with our ambitious strategy built together with the WWF.
Third and finally, we have Engagement, also begun on an unprecedented scale and reflected in the 88 per cent of young Parisians who support our bid.
So… Passion. Purpose. Engagement.
Paris will offer all of this.
The result will benefit everyone:
• Fans, spectators, broadcasters and partners who will enjoy an incredible party on a truly unforgettable stage.
• And you, our friends in the IOC, the IFs and the NOCs, whose work, day-in day-out, helps to drive our Movement forward.
The Games in a city with the best public transport network in the world and the best accommodation.
Beach Volleyball and Triathlon at the Eiffel Tower…
Archery at Les Invalides…
Fencing and Taekwondo in the Grand Palais.
Olympism in action…
Sport at the heart of modern society…
Driving real change in the world.
And now… stop imagining.
Because, it’s real. Paris 2024 is already underway.
Today we will demonstrate that our project is already delivering and building incredible momentum.
It’s underway in celebration with exceptional plans for the Olympic Day.
It’s underway in legacy with international education programmes.
It’s underway with the biggest engagement programme ever implemented by a bid.
We are ready right now to put this incredible people power at the service of the Olympic and Paralympic Movement.
To share the spirit of Paris, the spirit of a new generation…
To share and to build together with you that better future through sport.
We want to tell you so much more. In fact, we can’t wait to get started!
I have the same feelings I always did before an Olympic Games:
Great pride, of course: in this team; in this country; and in this project…
Determination, knowing that we have so many people behind us…
And, even if I have the usual pre-competition nerves, I have the sensation that our team is prepared and ready to go.
On that note, please allow me, Mr President, to return the floor to you.
Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo
Mr President, dear Members of the IOC, dear members of the Evaluation Commission…
Welcome to Paris! Bienvenue à Paris
I am sure many of you have been here before, maybe to visit the Sorbonne, where the first Olympic Congress took place.
Or the “Bon Marché”, where the first Olympic flag was created…
Or to share our passion for all Olympic sports, during a sporting event.
We have one goal during these few days: to convince you that Paris is the right city, with the right vision, at the right moment.
The right city with world-class venues and accommodation, and the best public transport in the world, ready right now.
With financial and political stability and support, ready right now.
And with a global profile, to inspire the world.
The right vision, because we are and we want to be a trusted partner of the Olympic Movement.
Because we believe that the IOC has a key role to play for peace and sustainable development, and that the world needs Olympism more than ever.
Together, as true partners, we want to open a new chapter in Olympism.
And to deliver great Games… with a real, lasting legacy.
At the right moment, as the no risk option, because we have all the necessary guarantees in place.
And a massive engagement of all the people, not only French people, ready to start supporting us, and you, on the road to 2024.
We believe in Sport, we believe in Olympism.
We believe that the Games are so much more than just a business opportunity.
We claim that sport can improve lives and change society.
And we are sure that Paris is the best City to promote this power of sport in the world.
Paris is ‘Made for Sharing’.
Together, we can share the ideal and the reality that sport can create a better world with every generation, on every continent.
Paris 2024 Co-Chair, Bernard Lapasset
President, dear friends, I would like to emphasise that it is not simply sport united behind this project.
We have gone beyond.
The entire French nation has been mobilised. We have been able to bring our country together around our vision and our Olympic Values.
We have consulted and co-created our project, drawing on France’s great diversity and wealth of talent.
Let me give some examples:
The public authorities have been at our side from the very beginning, offering their support and all required guarantees.
Across all political lines, all of our parties and our main trade unions have given their commitment to Paris 2024.
The business community and our commercial partners have also demonstrated tremendous support and understanding of the fantastic opportunity and the dynamic that Paris 2024 represents.
Finally we are developing important programmes together with major NGOs and the voluntary sector.
Because, for us, legacy is imperative. It starts from the candidature phase. And so it is starting now.
Personally, I have spent a significant amount of time on the road, meeting local and regional politicians to tell them about this project, and its benefits for France.
All the Presidents of Regions and the National Congress of the Mayors of France have declared the bid to be a project of national interest.
They are all united behind us, willing to promote the values of Olympism, to develop sports and engage the population.
It is our duty now to honour that support by delivering fantastic Games for the people of our local communities as well as for the international sporting movement.
At the National Congress of Mayors, one speaker gave a very clear message, and I quote: “The Paris 2024 bid is a bid for all of France.
“It carries a message of hope and unity, and I am proud that so many local leaders have pledged their support.
“This project will touch and resonate with the whole nation.”
Today, that speaker is about to join me at the podium!
It is my honour to introduce the Mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo.
French IOC Member Guy Drut
President, Dear Patrick,
Ladies and gentlemen Members of the IOC Evaluation Commission…
It’s a great honour and a real pleasure to officially welcome you to France, and to this magnificent city of Paris to begin our important working session.
I am happy and proud that this new bid strongly demonstrates once again France’s firm commitment to the universal values of Olympism.
As a nation that has taken part in every edition of the Games since their creation, there can be no doubt about France’s determination, perseverence and deep desire to be awarded the honour of hosting.
If any proof is needed, it can be found in the four recent bids in which I have participated – in previous times alongside my friends and fellow IOC members Jean-Claude Killy and the late Henri Serandour, and today with Tony Estanguet.
Each of these bids has brought us experience, and we have learned from our failures.
I can also say with confidence that this bid, which we are going to develop together with you over the next three days, is the strongest yet and the one in which we are placing the greatest hope.
Conceived by athletes, for athletes, this bid, whose values transcend those of sport, has quickly built an extraordinary unity beyond sport and at all levels of Government.
It starts at the State level with our new President of France Emmanuel Macron who, just like his predecessors, Jacques Chirac, Nicolas Sarkozy and Francois Hollande, supports and carries forward our Olympic Values.
And of course with the Mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo as well as Valerie Pécresse, the President of the Ile de France Region, and all of our local and national representatives and stakeholders.
What you see in front of you today is, therefore, a real team, and one that is working every day to drive this project forward.
It is a team that shares a single goal : to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris in 2024.
Our bid has been inspired by history, to open a new chapter in history.
Paris is where Pierre de Coubertin first imagined a better world through sport.
It has also hosted the Games twice before – although the last time was more than 25 years before I was born!
In 2024, on the centenary of the last Paris Games, we hope this city will show the power of Olympism in action in the modern world.
More than ever, we will honour the vision of Baron Pierre de Coubertin… and renew it for the next « one hundred » years.
President of the CNOSF, Denis Masseglia
On behalf of the entire sports movement in France, every single one of our 17 million-strong community, we are delighted to welcome you here.
Just three days ago I was re-elected as President of the French National Olympic Committee.
It’s a great honour to be able to continue to represent French sport and help carry forward the Paris 2024 bid together with my friends.
This bid was conceived by the NOC.
It spent its early life in our offices, and grew in strength as we studied the lessons of our past bids.
And Paris 2024 continued to develop in our offices until the day when the team grew too big to be housed at the NOC.
That was a proud day for me.
Proud because of the trusted relationships that we have built with each stakeholders from the start of the project.
Proud because of the two Co-Presidents we have chosen to lead Paris 2024, both from the sports movement.
Bernard and Tony are a unique combination: an IF President who took his sport into the Olympic Games; and an exceptional athlete who took home Olympic gold medals at three different Games.
Bernard brings a wealth of experience and knowledge as one of the most respected French figures in global sport.
And Tony brings determination as well as the fresh thinking you would expect from one of the brightest stars of a new generation of sports leaders.
This is a tandem that works because it is so complementary. And a tandem that will go far because it has a huge ‘peloton’ behind.
I can assure you of the absolute commitment of the NOC and the NPC behind our Paris 2024 Co-Presidents.
But what I’d like to emphasise is that what you see here today is the tip of an iceberg.
For every Olympian or Paralymian you meet or speak to this week, there are thousands and thousands of grassroots athletes, competing across all sports, who have worked with us to create our project and help to promote it every day.
And the strength of our bid depends on engagement way beyond the French sports movement. It is truly the bid of an entire country.
Our dynamic duo will tell you more, starting with Bernard.