By Tom Degun

andy hunt_08-12-11December 8 - British Olympic Association (BOA) chief executive Andy Hunt (pictured) has revealed that they will make a final decision about whether to put forward a bid for the 2018 Summer Youth Olympic Games at their Board meeting in February.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has stated that National Olympic Committees have until March 1, 2012, to name a Candidate City for the competition and Glasgow City Council has already contacted the BOA to express an interest in hosting the prestigious event for 14 to 18-year-old elite athletes.

"A bid for the 2018 Youth Olympic is something that we are seriously interested in," Hunt told insidethegames.

"We have been working very closely with our Board over the last few months evaluating the feasibility of bidding for the event.

"We have been considering what it would mean in terms of a legacy for Britain and what we could get out of it in terms of inspiring young people.

"Following our Board meeting last month, we are now looking at the process to potentially to put a UK applicant city forward.

"We will go through that process carefully and we understand that there are applicant cities in the UK that could provide an interesting and feasible prospect for a bid.

"Once we conclude that process, the Board will then decide on whether or not to put forward a formal bid at our meeting in February ahead of the official March 1 deadline."

Hunt also talked up a potential bid from Glasgow but stressed that there must be full support for a bid for it to be successful.

"It is no big secret that Glasgow has been in contact with us and that they are very interested in bidding but we have to make sure that all the right factors are in place to bid," he said.

"We need to make sure that there is support for a bid in all the right areas because if there is not full backing from Local and National Government as well as the National Olympic Committee then a bid is dead in the water.

"We are really gauging that support right now but a bid is something that we are certainly very interested in and something that represents and exciting prospect for the BOA."

Glasgow look set to be the only city in the UK that would bid for the event after Manchester and Birmingham – the other obvious British candidates for the competition – confirmed to insidethegames that they have no plans to put forward a bid.

Meanwhile, Cardiff in Wales appears more focused on a potential bid for the Commonwealth Games in 2026 after last week receiving Government support for the plan.

Glasgow will be hoping that their city will prove attractive for the BOA to put forward as a UK bidding candidate due to fact the majority of the infrastructure and venues will already be in place by 2018 due to the fact that the city is hosting the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

sir chris_hoy_velodrome_08-12-11
Glasgow are currently building a number of brand new sporting venues for the 2014 competition – including the Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome (pictured) – and therefore would not require major investment to stage 2018 Youth Olympics.

Buenos Aires in Argentina, Monterrey in Mexico and Abuja in Nigeria have already said that they are likely to bid for the competition with other potential bid cities including Medellín in Colombia, Kazan in Russia, The Hague in the Netherlands, and Makhachkala, in Dagestan, a neighbour of Chechnya.

The IOC will make a final decision on where the event is held in June in 2013.

The inaugural Summer Youth Olympics took place in Singapore last year and was hailed as a huge success, while Innsbruck in Austria are set to stage the first ever Winter Youth Olympics next month.

The Chinese city of Nanjing will host the 2014 Summer Youth Olympics, while Lillehammer, Norway were yesterday confirmed as the hosts the second Youth Olympic Games in 2016, which was no surprise as they were the only bidder for the event.

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