Olympic Games: Manchester buoyant

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The Independent Online
MANCHESTER'S Olympic bid is gathering such momentum that the city is now neck-and-neck with the long-time favourites, Sydney and Peking, in the race to host the 2000 Games.

That was the confident assertion of Bob Scott, who masterminded the Manchester plan, as he prepared to present the International Olympic Committee in Lausanne today with the city's formal bid document, designed to show exactly why Manchester should be chosen to bring the Games back to Britain.

Scott believes that the 500-page brief is so impressive that it will remove any suggestion of a two- horse race and ensure that Manchester is a genuine contender to win the IOC vote in Monte Carlo on 23 September.

'Sydney and Peking have been the front runners for some time, but I think there's a rising belief that Manchester are on level terms now and looking like the best of the European bids,' Scott said.

Six contenders are realistically left in the running - Manchester, Peking, Sydney, Istanbul, Milan and Berlin. Tashkent withdrew over the weekend and Brasilia is expected to do so before today's deadline for acceptance of formal bids.