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29 Sep 2009
Governor of Tokyo calls Olympic vote "most important election" of his life
The Governor of the world's largest city, Tokyo, arrived in Copenhagen today to help ensure the strongest possible finish to Tokyo 2016's Bid to host the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Shintaro Ishihara may have been elected for three consecutive terms as the popular Governor of Tokyo, but speaking as President of the Tokyo 2016 Bid he had a clear message in the Danish capital ahead of the International Olympic Committee's 2016 Host City selection on 2 October 2009:
"Without doubt, we are here for the most important election I've ever been involved in. A winning outcome will change millions of lives forever," he said.
"We are passionate about hosting the 2016 Games in Tokyo to inspire youth around the world and become the catalyst for a brighter future for all through sport. That is the true power of Olympism.
"Tokyo 2016 is backed by every corner of Japanese society including more than 27 million people in our city and over 100 million across Japan. We are opening our arms to the IOC and want to help the Olympic Movement achieve all its aspirations, as a true partner.
"I want everyone to know we are here to win. Soon our sails will be fully open and we are feeling our Bid starting to accelerate towards the finish. With hard work, Tokyo is coming up fast in this race."
Governor Ishihara was met on arrival by Tokyo 2016 Chair and CEO, Dr Ichiro Kono, who is already in Copenhagen with the President of the Japanese Olympic Committee and various other members of the Tokyo 2016 delegation, including some of Japan's top Olympic and Paralympic heroes.
As a tangible example of Tokyo 2016's commitment to hosting a Carbon?Minus Games, Governor Ishihara and Bid members travelled from the airport in Mitsubishi electric powered cars, showcasing Japan's latest environmentally?friendly technology.
Dr Kono said:
"The major urban and environmental transformation taking place in our city will be completed by 2016, making it the perfect time for Tokyo to host the Games, with water and greenery surrounding the pinnacle of sporting achievement showcased right in the very heart of the world's largest city.
"Tokyo 2016 will be the most athlete?focused, compact and sustainable Games in history, where heroic performances take place that inspire youth around the world to embrace sport for a healthier and happier future.
"We helped create a legacy for the Olympic Movement in the 20th Century, but in this time of new challenges, Tokyo 2016 promises to bridge that distant past with an unprecedented 100?year legacy that reaches far into the 21st Century, and a better tomorrow through and beyond sport."
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