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“Saddened and scandalized”: Jean-Claude Killy criticizes the decision to withdraw Val d’Isère from the 2030 Winter Olympics

Jean-Claude Killy, legend of French alpine skiing, said on Saturday he was “scandalized” by the withdrawal of the Val d’Isère resort from the 2030 Winter Olympics, for which the French Alps region is the only one candidate.

The French candidacy, which entered into “targeted dialogue” on Wednesday with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) which will designate the host next year, is “a magnificent north-south project and is coherent because it relies on mainly existing infrastructure », recalled the triple Olympic champion from Grenoble 1968 in a press release to AFP. But he said he was “saddened and scandalized by the peremptory decision to remove Val d’Isère from the system”, believing that an entire section of the history of ski racing was being thrown away “without analysis, without consultation and without rational basis. “.

“No one takes responsibility”

The French project, which claims to be based on 95% of existing sites, was to extend from Nice to Grand-Bornand, nearly 500 km apart, with an alpine ski center on the sites of Courchevel-Méribel and Val d’ Isère. But, according to L’Équipe and Dauphiné Libéré, Val d’Isère, which was to host the men’s and women’s slaloms on the Bellevarde face, was withdrawn by the IOC in order to reduce as much as possible the number of stations used. The president of the Auvergne – Rhône-Alpes region Laurent Wauquiez confirmed the decision in Dauphiné. The slaloms will be resumed by Courchevel-Méribel.

The Isola 2000 resort, in the Alpes-Maritimes, which was to host skicross and snowboarding, is also paying the price for this slimming treatment. “No one, in all the exchanges I have had over the last few hours, takes responsibility” for withdrawing Val d’Isère and “it would seem that the dialogue which was to last until spring is already over”, Jean-Claude Killy still protests, asking to “reconsider this decision”.

The two disciplines of alpine skiing, speed and technique, “can live on two sites”, estimates the co-president of the organizing committee for the 1992 Olympic Games in Albertville, defending the assets of Val d’Isère: “excellence of its slopes and its infrastructures, all existing and well-established, its organizational expertise, its strong history and its passion for ski racing and Olympism. Bellevarde notably hosted events for the 1992 Winter Games and the 2009 World Championships.

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