Fun and (hope­fully) Games in Paris

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE -

PARIS: A diver plunged into the Seine while the mayor of Paris took to the river in a kayak as the French cap­i­tal trans­formed it­self into a gi­ant Olympic park yes­ter­day as part of its fi­nal push to win the rights to host the 2024 Games.

Paris and US ri­val Los Angeles are the only two cities bid­ding to stage the 2024 Olympics and the French cap­i­tal is run­ning a series of events this weekend to pro­mote its cre­den­tials.

Ca­noes and kayaks filled the Seine just out­side Notre Dame cathe­dral, while the diver jumped into the river from one of the city’s bridges.

“This is a great op­por­tu­nity for us to give a taste of what the Games will be like here in 2024,” said for­mer Olympic gold medal ca­noeist Tony Es­tanguet, who is lead­ing Paris’s bid to host the event.

Paris’s mayor, Anne Hi­dalgo, turned up along­side Es­tanguet, with the two of them tak­ing to the Seine in a kayak, not far from where sprint­ers were pelt­ing along a 100m float­ing athletics track.

Paris last hosted the Olympic Games in 1924, while Los Angeles has held it twice, most re­cently in 1984.

In July 2005 in Sin­ga­pore, Lon­don pipped an over-con­fi­dent Paris, which had lost out to Bei­jing for the 2008 Games, to win the right to stage the 2012 Sum­mer Olympics, trig­ger­ing tears in the French camp when the re­sults were an­nounced. – Reuters

Kayak­ers pad­dle on the Seine River in Paris yes­ter­day as part of events to show­case the French cap­i­tal’s suit­abil­ity to host the Olympics.

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