Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 25th 2015 Contents ROME---The marathon route
winding through St Peter s
Square and finishing
under the Arch of Constantine in
front of the Colosseum. A medals
plaza set up inside the Baths of
Caracalla. Beach volleyball played
at the Circus Maximus.
Since Italian Premier Matteo
Renzi announced Rome s bid for
the 2024 Olympics last year, the
details have been something of a
But, in a wide-ranging interview
with The Associated Press, bid
chairman Luca Cordero di Mon-
tezemolo revealed a list of "iconic
venues" that will take full advantage
of Rome s historic settings and
Italy s television-friendly back-
Among other plans, cyclists could
finish the road race with a sprint
on the majestic Via dei Fori Impe-
riali and sailing would take place
off Sardinia, Sicily or the Amalfi
coast. The marathon route would
run alongside Rome s synagogue
and mosque to promote interfaith
"With television today, to have
the possibility to put together the
sport, the emotion, with the (sur-
roundings) is fantastic," said Mon-
tezemolo, the former Ferrari pres-
ident and current Alitalia chairman.
The centre of the bid project is
the Foro Italico, which features the
Stadio Olimpico used for the 1960
Games with an adjacent aquatics
"We can do the opening cere-
mony and the athletics tonight,"
Montezemolo said. "(We re) ready.
Swimming tonight. ... Seventy per-
cent of the venues are existing."
Another main area will be at Tor
Vergata, a university zone on
Rome s ring road that would be
used for the athletes village, bas-
ketball, volleyball and perhaps the
Gymnastics, boxing, fencing,
judo, taekwondo and some other
sports would be held at the Fiera
convention center near the main
With Tor Vergata currently in a
state of abandonment. Monteze-
molo wants the athletes village to
be turned into university housing
and a hospital after the games.
"I don t want to present a town
that puts in the window only his-
tory and (the) past," he said.
A drawback might be the dis-
tance---33 kilometres (20 miles)---
from Tor Vergata to the Foro Italico.
That could impact athletics and
swimming competitors who often
return to the village between morn-
ing heats and evening finals.
Rome would like to host the
games in August (sometime
between Aug. 5-25) when the locals
go on vacation---so traffic might
not be as much of a problem as
"It could be 40 minutes without
traffic," Montezemolo said.
One of the biggest challenges to
Rome s bid remains concern over
corruption in construction con-
Dozens of suspects have been
ordered to stand trial in November
for a widening corruption scandal
in Rome labeled "Mafia Capital."
Phone conversations intercepted
by police and published in the
media described how local criminal
bosses managed to cement ties with
city politicians over lucrative public
"I don t accept that it s automatic
to do a big event together with cor-
ruption," Montezemolo said.
At a flashy funeral send-off for
a reputed mafia chieftain last
month, there was a gilded horse-
drawn carriage and "Godfather"
"I was astonished," Montezemolo
said of Vittorio Casamonica s
funeral. "If this happened, it means
that somebody did not (police)
With "Mafia Capital" in mind,
Montezemolo is appointing Renzi s
anti-corruption czar Raffaele Can-
tone to a place on the bid team,
and he s also naming a handful of
prominent judicial figures to oversee
the contracts process.
"This is the best way to clean,"
said Montezemolo, who is running
the bid committee without a salary.
"This is the process. For many years
that was not the process."
In line with the IOC s new cost-
cutting agenda, Rome is also pro-
moting a thrifty bid.
Plans call for a games budget of
6 billion euros ($6.7 billion)---or
roughly half of what London spent
The bid budget is 10 million
euros ($11 million)---a fraction of
the 60 million euros ($65 million)
that rival Paris is spending. Los
Angeles---the other main con-
tender---raised $35 million in a sin-
gle week for its bid campaign.
The other bidders are Hamburg,
Germany, and Budapest, Hungary.
The IOC will select the host city
Rome hasn t launched a Web site
yet---although that s in the works.
Having witnessed Boston s with-
drawal from the race after a public
backlash, Rome is being extra care-
"I prefer to announce when
things are confirmed," Monteze-
molo said. "It s very easy to say we
will do soccer in the Colosseum
and maybe swimming in the Tiber.
But that is not realistic."
• Twitter: @GuardianTT • Web: guardian.co.tt
2014 Olympic bid committee chairman Luca Cordero di Montezemolo points at a photo of Rome's Olympic stadium
during an interview with the Associated Press in Rome, Wednesday. In a wide-ranging interview Cordero di
Montezemolo unveiled a list of "iconic venues" that will take full advantage of Rome's wealth of historic settings
and promote Italy's beauty. AP PHOTO
MELBOURNE---Australia fast bowler
Pat Cummins will miss a two-test
tour of Bangladesh due to a new stress
fracture in his back and Cricket Aus-
tralia said yesterday he will be re-
placed by all-rounder James Faulkner.
The 22-year-old Cummins has
been affected by back and other in-
juries for most of his young career and
has not played a test since his debut in
South Africa in 2011.
But after playing 13 One-Day Inter-
nationals and four Twenty20 games
for Australia since November, he was
expected to play in Bangladesh and in
upcoming home tests against New
Zealand and the West Indies.
Cricket Australia physiotherapist
David Beakley said Cummins experi-
enced recent lower back pain and a
scan showed a "new early-stage lum-
bar bone stress fracture," adding
Cummins would undergo a lengthy
Cummins out of Bangladesh tour with back stress fracture
Rome for sale
....Vatican, Colosseum to feature in Olympic bid Dozens of suspects have
been ordered to stand trial
in November for a widening
corruption scandal in Rome
labeled "Mafia Capital."
intercepted by police and
published in the media
described how local criminal
bosses managed to cement
ties with city politicians
over lucrative public
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