Joint Statement From the International Olympic Committee and the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee
The President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, and the Prime Minister of Japan, Abe Shinzo, Held a Conference Call This Morning to Discuss the Constantly Changing Environment With Regard to Covid-19 and the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
They were joined by Mori Yoshiro, the President of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee; the Olympic Minister, Hashimoto Seiko; the Governor of Tokyo, Koike Yuriko; the Chair of the IOC Coordination Commission, John Coates; IOC Director General Christophe De Kepper; and the IOC Olympic Games Executive Director, Christophe Dubi.
President Bach and Prime Minister Abe expressed their shared concern about the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, and what it is doing to people’s lives and the significant impact it is having on global athletes’ preparations for the Games.
In a very friendly and constructive meeting, the two leaders praised the work of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and noted the great progress being made in Japan to fight against COVID-19.
The unprecedented and unpredictable spread of the outbreak has seen the situation in the rest of the world deteriorating. Yesterday, the Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that the COVID-19 pandemic is “accelerating”. There are more than 375,000 cases now recorded worldwide and in nearly every country, and their number is growing by the hour. In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.
The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present. Therefore, it was agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan. It was also agreed that the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.
Trek-Segafredo riders respond to Tokyo 2020 postponement
Today the International Olympic Committee and the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee confirmed that the 2020 games in Tokyo are postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Although this is an immense disappointment for so many athletes across many sports all around the world, we support our riders’ collective agreement to the postponement. Our love of sport is secondary to the health of our communities.
Postponing the 2020 Tokyo Olympics prioritizes safety and will give more people the opportunity to enjoy the incredible achievements displayed by athletes from around the globe.
For me it’s good that the Tokyo Olympics will be postponed. It shows that we are thinking above sport and making everyone’s health the priority! I am 100% in support of this decision.
It is worse for all the athletes who have planned their seasons for this event, but I am glad the organizers have made this decision now rather than at the last minute.
We will all come back stronger, inside and outside sport!
Mads Pedersen, Trek-Segafredo
The Olympics has always been a huge part of my career. I was lucky enough to compete and win a medal in a home games and those memories will stay with me forever. Although I am disappointed about the postponement of Tokyo, I am sure that it is the right decision.
The Olympics is a celebration of sport but also of our global community and together we need to work towards a different kind of victory. I have the motivation and optimism to carry me through to an Olympics in 2021, what a special games that will be.
Lizzie Deignan, Trek-Segafredo
The Olympics, for every athlete, is an event of great importance. All the more so, if the athlete is predicted as a protagonist. Tokyo 2020 was a goal of my season, perhaps the most important. But the postponement of a year does not change my aspirations and, from now on, I can say that I will plan my preparation to arrive at the event in the best possible condition.
I think the IOC made the right choice. Right now, the world needs to focus its efforts on fighting the emergency. Sport can wait. And in 2021 we will all be ready to celebrate its rebirth together.
Vincenzo Nibali, Trek-Segafredo
I am confident the IOC made the right decision in postponing the Olympic Games, and all of the data and information confirms that this decision is the right choice. I believe all the athletes and key stakeholders involved wholeheartedly understand the level of impact that COVID-19 is having on the world. The measures taken to control this pandemic are not taken lightly, and right now, controlling the virus and flattening the curve is more significant than sport.
I feel incredibly fortunate and proud that Trek is honoring all athletes and employee salaries during this time of uncertainty. There are many unanswered questions are surrounding the Olympics, however, there is much to maintain fitness for. I am implementing many strategies to maintain daily purpose and focus for the day we get the green light to race again.