In July of this year the International Olympic Committee, the IOC, officially agreed to the introduction of a Summer Youth Olympic Games for athletes between the ages of 14 – 18 years. Once the decision was announced several NOCs realised that this was an opportunity they really did not want to miss and immediately gathered their forces to prepare Bids to host the Inaugural edition of the Games in 2010.
According to an IOC announcement, the candidates for the 2010 Games are ( in alphabetical order): Algiers 2010 (Algeria), Athens 2010 (Greece), Bangkok 2010 (Thailand), Belgrade 2010 (Republic of Serbia), Debrecen 2010 (Hungary), Guatemala City 2010 (Guatemala), Kuala Lumpur 2010 (Malaysia), Moscow 2010 (Russian Federation), Poznan 2010 (Poland), Singapore 2010 (Singapore) and Turin 2010 (Italy). The 11 Youth Olympic Games Candidate Cities now have until October 26 th to prepare and submit their Candidature Files by replying to the IOC questionnaire. An analysis of their Files by a panel of Olympic Movement experts will allow a short list of Youth Olympic Games Candidate Cities to be drawn up for further evaluations by an IOC Evaluation Commission.
The various International Federations (IF) are already exploring precisely how these Youth Olympics will impact their respective sports. Many will have to make adjustments to their own international calendars while others will have to simply bite the bullet and develop innovative strategies to maintain their positions in the international sporting community in their own right.