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Vail eyes 2015 World Championships

Chris Outcalt
coutcalt@vaildaily.com
Vail, CO Colorado
AP PhotoLindsey Vonn, of Vail, won the downhill at the World Alpine Ski Championships in Val d'Isere, France, Monday. Vail and Beaver Creek may bid to host the event in 2015.
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VAIL, Colorado ” The Vail Valley Foundation hasn’t decided whether it wants to bid on the 2015 alpine World Championships, but the group is very interested, said spokesman John Dakin.

The foundation put the combination of Beaver Creek and Vail Mountain into consideration to host both the 2009 and 2013 championships, but lost out to mountains in Europe.

May 1 is the deadline for the foundation to decide whether it wants to bid on the 2015 championships and a large part of the decision will come down to money, Dakin said.



“We are very interested in pursuing a 2015 bid,” Dakin said. “But there are some things that will need to get put in place before we can say it’s a 100 percent go.”

The International Ski Federation, or FIS, has exclusive rights to negotiate the television and sponsorship contracts for the event. Once the contracts are finalized, the federation will tell those interested in bidding on the championships how much money is available for the event.



If the number is big enough, it’s likely the Vail Valley Foundation will bid to host the alpine races, Dakin said.

“One of the big pieces of the puzzle that remains out there is what the terms of the contract are going to be,” he said. “You have to know that number so that you can make an educated decision to say this is worth doing or not.”

And that event budget could be lower this year because of the poor economy, Dakin said.



“I think conventional wisdom would tell you that the number may be smaller because of the global economy,” Dakin said.

If the group does bid to host the event, Dakin likes its chances.

“I feel we’ve got as good a shot as anybody,” he said. “I think that we’ve got a good proposal, I think that certainly we have the courses, I think there’s a lot of sentiment that it’s time to move out of central Europe.”

The last time the World Championships ” which is held every two years ” was outside of Europe was in 1999 when Vail and Beaver creek hosted the event.

“I think the (community) support is there,” he said. “It’s something that would be great for the valley to look forward to.”

Dakin doesn’t know when the ski federation will finalize the contracts for the 2015 event, but said its always happened before the deadline to decide whether to bid on the races.

Staff Writer Chris Outcalt can be reached at 970-748-2931 or coutcalt@vaildaily.com.


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