TSX DAILY: Australia is having the “Olympic Talk” about Queensland; the Diamond League, money and more

= TSX DAILY ~ 16 August 2019 =

| 1. |  LANE ONE: With a possible 2032 bid ahead, Australia’s Queensland region is now having the “Olympic talk”

Even though the International Olympic Committee has tried to deflate much of the silliness out of the bidding process for the Olympic and Olympic Winter Games, it’s back in the news … in Australia.

The state of Queensland, which includes Brisbane and 2018 Commonwealth Games host Gold Coast, is highly interested in bidding for 2032 and is led to believe by Australian IOC member John Coates that a bid could be secured as early as 2020. It has commissioned a study to look into the public costs, with the report due next year.

In the meantime, a public discussion is taking place about whether such a bid is worthwhile. Shane Wright, the senior economics writer for several major Australian newspapers, filed an opinion piece saying that hosting the Games always results in cost overruns and that public money is better spent elsewhere.

Coates responded with his own article, citing the IOC’s reforms that allow a Games to be staged over a wide area – not just in one city – and emphasizing the use of existing and temporary facilities. What’s more, he notes, is that the IOC’s financial support will help ensure that the operating costs of the Games will be covered privately.

Ah, but what of the public costs for construction and the like? Coates says that major works in transportation and related areas are not about the Games and should be done because they are needed in any case. Wright cites a study stating cost overruns are inevitable.

Wright’s reliance on the British study he cites is a problem because it overlooks the one Games where these things didn’t happen. The 1984 Games in Los Angeles – finally adopted, about 30 years late, as the IOC’s new paradigm – was not only staged at no cost to the City of Los Angeles and State of California taxpayers, but ended with a surplus that has gone into the service of youth sports locally and Olympic sport in the U.S. nationally.

That happened because of a referendum in Los Angeles in 1978 that required the City to forego sending any money unless it could recover it from Games revenues. And it did; the organizing committee’s central focus was on containing costs and making the Games work with private financing.

The same options are open to the Queensland folks: existing facilities, private financing if desired and the opportunity to put the question to a vote. That there is a lively public debate about a Queensland bid is a good thing. Coates himself, in recommendations adopted by the IOC last June, suggested that bidding cities or regions hold any necessary referenda before formally submitting their bid for Games. He may have prescribed the answer to the question of whether Queensland should bid for 2032.

| 2. | ATHLETICS: Diamond League resumes in Birmingham with a major Caribbean showdown

After a month’s break for national championships and the Pan American Games, the IAAF Diamond League resumes on Sunday in Birmingham (GBR) with what are essentially previews of the upcoming World Championships on Qatar.

One of the most compelling events is the women’s 200 m, where Pan American Games champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (pictured) – twice Olympic champion at 100 m – will face Olympic 400 m champ Shaunae Miller-Uibo from The Bahamas. The latter has not been beaten over this distance in two years, winning 10 finals in a row. The two have not met since 2015 in this event and are 1-1 lifetime against each other. Both will have to contend with Blessing Okagbare, no. 2 on the 2019 world list at 22.05.

In the women’s 100 m hurdles, world-record holder Keni Harrison of the U.S. and 2016 Olympic gold medalist Brianna McNeal (USA) will face the top two on the 2019 world list: Danielle Williams (JAM: 12.32) and Janeek Brown (JAM: 12.40). The same four are expected to fight for the medals at the World Championships.

There are many other individual stars entered, including American sprinter Christian Coleman in the 100 m, American – and Worlds favorite – Ajee Wilson in the women’s 800 m, pole vault stars Katerina Stefanidi (GRE) and Jenn Suhr and Katie Nageotte of the U.S. and many more. Our in-depth preview is here.

| 3. | SHOOTING: 19 Olympic or Worlds medalists at Lahti Shotgun World Cup

The ISSF World Cup series for Shotgun events – Trap and Skeet – has started in Lahti (FIN), with more than 400 shooters on the line, and Olympic qualifying slots in play.

The event has attracted 19 current or recent Olympic or World Championships medalists, including Americans Caitlin Connor, the 2018 World Skeet Champion and Amber English, the 2018 Worlds Skeet bronze medalist.

Competition continues through the 22nd; our preview is here.

| 4. | SWIMMING: Morozov and Campbell win big at FINA World Cup to stay in front

The third meet of the FINA Swimming World Cup in Singapore is the final leg of the first “cluster” of meets and carries major prize money, including $50,000 for the winners of the men’s and women’s point standings.

On the first of three days, Russia’s Vladimir Morozov and Australian Cate Campbell both tried to make sure that they would not be overtaken.

Morozov (pictured) won the 50 m Freestyle in a World Cup record of 21.27, a season’s best, no. 2 in the world for 2019 and moving him to no. 7 on the all-time list. Campbell swam the women’s race in 24.02, a time only she and Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom have bettered this season.

They aren’t home free yet, with two more days to go. Their closest pursuers, American Andrew Wilson and Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu, both won races on Thursday as well. But the quality of their marks wasn’t as good as Morozov and Campbell and – if all four win three events each, as planned – the bonus points from the FINA scoring tables will make the difference in the final standings.

Morozov and Campbell took major steps toward winning the first prize, but there are other prizes and second also comes with a handsome payday of $35,000 each. More here.

| 5. | BASKETBALL: U.S. men’s World Cup team to face Spain in Anaheim Friday

The U.S. men’s National Team will play its first exhibition game ahead of the FIBA World Cup in China on Friday against Spain at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California at 7 p.m. Pacific time.

This will be the first game that the U.S. team will play a full game against. With many of the NBA’s top stars passing on playing for the national team this year, alarming reports of the current team being badly outplayed by a team of G-League players and free agents in two scrimmages on Wednesday have circulated widely.

The game vs. Spain will give a better reading, as will two games in Melbourne against Australia and one vs. Canada. The American squad opens World Cup play in Shanghai (CHN) vs. the Czech Republic on 1 September.

| 6. | FOOTBALL: U.S. Women’s National Team reps walk out of mediation talks

The negotiations between representatives of the U.S. Women’s National Team and the U.S. Soccer Federation over compensation and conditions ended on Wednesday.

According to women’s team spokeswoman Molly Levinson, “We entered this week’s mediation with representatives of [U.S. Soccer] full of hope. Today we must conclude these meetings sorely disappointed in the Federation’s determination to perpetuate fundamentally discriminatory workplace conditions and behavior.”

Federation spokesman Neil Buethe countered, “We have said numerous times that our goal is to find a resolution, and during mediation we had hoped we would be able to address the issues in a respectful manner and reach an agreement. Unfortunately, instead of allowing mediation to proceed in a considerate manner, plaintiffs’ counsel took an aggressive and ultimately unproductive approach that follows months of presenting misleading information to the public in an effort to perpetuate confusion.”

The players filed a class-action lawsuit in March, alleging unequal pay and working conditions. If the talks to do not resume, the suit will proceed. The USSF ha presented data showing the women’s team created less revenue than the men’s team did, which of course is disputed by the women’s players (and the men’s, too).

| 7. | TRIATHLON: Canada’s Mislawchuk wins men’s Olympic test event in Tokyo; one women’s athlete treated for heat

The second day of the ITU Olympic Qualifying event at the Odaiba Marine Park in Tokyo saw Canada’s Tyler Mislawchuk post a swift run to win in 1:49:51, just ahead of Norway’s Casper Stornes (1:49:55) and New Zealand’s Hayden Wilde (1:50:03).

Temperatures were down to 84 degrees F at the start and the water temp was also 84 F. This allowed the full Olympic distance to be run (1.5 km swim, 40 km bike, 10 km run). One case of heat stroke was reported from the women’s race; France’s Cassandre Beaugrand was taken to a hospital after finishing 19th in 1:43:39.