Istanbul 2020 reveal campaign logo as Turkish Prime Minister throws full support behind bid
Monday, 23 July 2012
July 23 - Istanbul are raising the profile on their campaign to host the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics on the eve of London 2012 by unveiling a bid logo and revealing that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will travel to the Games.
The new logo, which followed a public vote who had the choice of five designs, combines the flower of Istanbul, a tulip, with the world-famous skyline of the Eurasian city.
It was unveiled by Erdoğan as he addressed the record breaking number of Turkish athletes attending London 2012, in a speech on the eve of their departure.
The inspiration behind the new logo design comes from the bridge that Istanbul forms between Europe and Asia, with the bottom half of the flower representing Asia and the top half showing Europe – if the bid is successful it will be the first time that the Olympics has been held across two continents.
Erdoğan plans to travel here with the team from Istanbul 2020, led by Hasan Arat, a high-profile sign that the Government is fully behind it.
"As a Government, we are very involved in promoting and supporting the Istanbul 2020 bid," he said.
"Turkey has the ambition, potential and infrastructure required to host the 2020 Games."
Istanbul is several months behind rivals Madrid and Tokyo in unveiling a campaign logo but Arat is confident that it will be a winner.
"A vibrant and young nation, a bridge between Europe and Asia, a modern and spectacular setting steeped in history – these are the ideas we wanted the Istanbul 2020 Candidate City logo to represent and our people have not let us down with their vote," he said.
"Our new logo has been chosen by Turkey's young population to act as a symbol of inspiration for our Olympic dream."
Turkey made its Olympic debut at London in 1908 and won its most ever medals when the Games were staged here in 1948.
They won a total of 12, including six gold, all in wrestling.
Now the country is sending its largest ever team to an Olympics with a total of 181 athletes representing it in 16 sports.
"The London 2012 Games is very significant for us, for Turkey," Erdoğan told the team in his address.
"Your success in London will have a big contribution to Turkey's bid process for 2020.
"The success that you, our precious athletes, have during the London 2012 Games will reinforce the potential of our nation to host the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Istanbul.
"While competing for your country and nation in London, you will also be building the way to 2020."
June 2012: Istanbul 2020 launch competition to find new logo