The political leader of the region surrounding Paris has seized on today's opening of the 2015 International Cycling Union (UCI) Track Cycling World Championships at the Vélodrome de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines to highlight the French capital's case for hosting the 2024 Olympics and Paralympics.
Jean-Paul Huchon, President of the Ȋle de France region, said the UCI's decision to stage its biggest track competition at the venue "validates the region's strategic choice: to provide the sporting movement with the means to develop itself and local people with access to the best sports infrastructure".
Huchon said that France's National Velodrome, which also houses the National Cycling Federation and the French national teams, had last year enabled 4,000 members of the public to take up track.
He went on: "Bringing together amateurs and professionals, this model will be replicated at the canoeing/rowing centre at Vaires-sur-Marne, the other legacy of [Paris's unsuccessful] candidacy for the 2012 Games.
"Like the future handball centre at Créteil and ice-hockey arena at Cergy-Pontoise, these items of infrastructure shape our territory and make it more attractive.
"Thanks to them, we are endowed with strong assets for a bid for the 2024 Olympics and Paralympics."
The Ȋle de France region contributed around 20 per cent of the €65.4 million (£48.3 million/$74.5 million) cost of constructing the Velodrome.
France finished second in the medals table behind Germany at the 2014 World Championships in Colombia, amassing four gold medals, three of which were won by the same man - François Pervis.
A decision on whether or not Paris will bid for the 2024 Games will be taken in the coming months.
Boston and Rome are already on the starting-line for the race, and may be joined next month by Hamburg or Berlin and possibly others.
The International Olympic Committee is due to choose the host city at its 2017 Session in the Peruvian capital of Lima.
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