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FC Sion chief moves forward with 2026 Olympic bid proposal

Christian Constantin, owner and president of Swiss Super League football club FC Sion, has stepped up his bid to launch a tilt at the 2026 winter Olympic Games by submitting a dossier to the cantonal government of Valais.

Constantin’s efforts were first revealed in December and Jean-Michel Cina, head of the Valais Department of Economic Affairs, told the SDA news agency that the proposal will be studied by the cantonal government.

Sion is the capital of Valais and has plenty of history with winter Olympic bids. For the 1976 Games, Sion was beaten by Denver, only for the US city to then give up the hosting rights. The Games were eventually awarded to Innsbruck, Austria.

In the infamous Salt Lake City scandal bidding process for the 2002 Games, Sion finished joint-second with Sweden’s Östersund. Then, for the 2006 winter Olympics, Sion was considered the favourite for the hosting rights before Torino won in the final vote.

Constantin’s proposal is still in its infancy and envisages an Olympic Games that would also spread outside Valais to the likes of Lausanne, Kandersteg and St. Moritz. Lausanne was in July awarded the hosting rights to the 2020 winter Youth Olympic Games, while the winter Olympics itself was last hosted in Switzerland by St. Moritz in 1948.