ON THE RIGHT TRACK

23.05.2012

International Masters Games Association Chief Executive Jens Holm has insisted Torino is on track to deliver a successful World Masters Games next year after resolving significant early challenges.

The Italian city, which hosted the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, was gripped by the fever of the financial downturn, and a change in the local administration led to preparations for the Games slowing to a crawl.

However, the IWGA's policy of taking its flagship event to destinations that do not require major investment in infrastructure or facilities has paid off, and the situation in Torino appears to have stabilised.

"They started off very slowly," Holm said. "A change of government in the region put things on hold for a while, and the current financial situation in Italy meant there had to be a restructuring of budgets.
"We did consider a plan 'b' and we were in talks with several other cities, but we decided to stay with Torino. We have had to make changes to some of the plans, but we are moving forward now. 

"We refer to the Games as a sports festival, and we are very aware of that when we select host cities as we like to go to places that are great tourist destinations - and Torino is exactly that."