Olympics / Winter Olympics

Milan-Cortina to host 2026 Winter Olympics

AP

Riding a wave of widespread Italian enthusiasm to be an Olympic host, Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo won the vote Monday to stage the 2026 Winter Games.

International Olympic Committee members voted 47-34 for the long-favored Milan-Cortina bid over Stockholm-Are from Sweden that also included a bobsled track in Latvia.

Milan-Cortina’s jubilant delegation broke into chants of “Italia! Italia!” when the result was announced, giving the Alpine nation a second Winter Games in 20 years.

“I’m really emotional,” Italian Olympic president Giovanni Malago said, close to tears at the winner’s news conference. “It’s a very important result, not only for me but the whole country.”

Italy will get a third Winter Games, after Turin hosted in 2006 and Cortina in 1956.

Sweden never hosted the Winter Games and was sent to an eighth loss in bidding in the past 41 years. A lack of enthusiasm for the project in Sweden — rating 28 percent below the Italians in the IOC’s own polls — was a decisive factor.