ALMOST $4M OWED TO INTERNATIONAL PARALYMPIC GROUP
rio de janeiro» Almost four months after the Olympics ended, Rio de Janeiro organizers are unable to pay some of their bills, including $3.7 million owed to the International Paralympic Committee.
IPC spokesman Craig Spence told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the money is owed for travel grants, which is part of the contractual agreement to host the Olympics and Paralympics.
“Never have we faced an issue like this with an organizing committee being so late paying travel grants,” Spence told The AP.
The default is the latest for embattled Rio organizers, who also have been late paying hundreds of creditors and contract employees.
Spence said the unpaid travel expenses were damaging national Paralympic committees, particularly those with tiny budgets.
“Some of our smaller national Paralympic committees, who took out loans to pay for their travel for the Games, are now in serious danger of defaulting on their repayments,” Spence said.
Cash-flow problems, budget cuts and cost overruns dogged organizers in the run-up to South America’s first Olympics.
Despite this, International Olympic Committee officials last week described the Rio games as “the most perfect, imperfect games,” discounting empty seats, organizational setbacks, and pea-green water in a diving and swimming venue.
Bobsled race pulled in Russia.
Avoiding what would have almost certainly been a widely boycotted world championships, international officials pulled this season’s biggest bobsled and skeleton competition out of Russia after a number of sliders said they would not compete in a nation so enveloped in a doping scandal.
Froome to ride in Australia race
B melbourne, australia» Tour de France champion Chris Froome will join the field in a new Australia Day cycling race to be held on Melbourne’s Formula One circuit on Jan. 26.
The three-time Tour winner will lead Team Sky in the race on the Albert Park track.
The men’s and women’s events will lead into the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race in Geelong, near Melbourne, on the weekend of Jan. 28-29.
Irwin bounces between trades.
Just days after he played for Toronto FC in the MLS Cup against Seattle, former Rapids goalkeeper Clint Irwin was taken by Atlanta United FC in the Major League Soccer expansion draft.
By the afternoon, he was traded back to Toronto.
Atlanta took two goalkeepers and three defenders in the expansion draft before dealing two of the newly acquired players — including Irwin — later in the afternoon. It is not uncommon for expansion teams to select players with the intention of moving them. Expansion draft» 4B
Wright to return in January
B new york» Mets third baseman David Wright expects to resume baseball activities next month following back surgery last spring.
General manager Sandy Alderson said the Mets captain will report to the team’s Florida complex in January, a month or more ahead of spring training. Wright, who turns 34 on Dec. 20, had surgery June 16 to repair a herniated disc in his neck and is in California.
Rangers re-sign Gomez
B arlington, texas» The Rangers have re-signed free agent outfielder Carlos Gomez, finishing the one-year, $11.5 million agreement reached during winter meetings.
The 31-year-old Gomez figures to play center field for the Rangers after Ian Desmond left for Colorado on a five-year, $70 million deal. Gomez is likely to be joined by Shin-Soo Choo in right and Nomar Mazara in left.