Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rio Admits It Has Much to Live Up to; Mayor Says London Games the Greatest

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Rio Admits It Has Much to Live Up to; Mayor Says London Games the Greatest

Article excerpt

Byline: Rob Phillips

THE Mayor of Rio de Janeiro congratulated Boris Johnson and London for putting on "the greatest Games ever". Eduardo Paes, mayor of Rio, which will host the next Olympics in 2016, said it would be hard to follow on from such a great Games, but they are working closely with London to learn as much as possible.

At a joint press conference with Mr Johnson in central London, Mr Paes said the connection between Rio and London started four years ago, as the South American city tried to learn as much as possible from the English capital.

"As we predicted you just did the greatest Games ever," he said.

"I really want to congratulate Mayor Boris Johnson for leading the city of London into these great Games.

"These are Games of legacy. I've been to London many times and it's amazing what you did in the area of the Olympic park.

"The logistics of the operation, the mobility of the people in London is really something.

"We came here for a little advice from Mayor Boris and we're going to use the lessons we learned here in London for Rio's Games.

"The city of Rio, it's not as rich as yours, but we're in good shape now."

He said the London 2012 team had done a "great job" and they had "learned a lot" from London.

He added: "Everyone's looking at London.

This was already a great city and it became even a greater city so Rio will try to follow you.

"You did so great that we're going to have lots of trouble, lots of work, but we're going to deliver great things in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro."

Mr Johnson said he would have mixed feelings as the Olympic flag is lowered on Sunday night and handed over.

But he said he thought London had done "a pretty good job of running the Olympics in 2012".

He said he would do his best not to "join the ranks of lachrymose British people in these Games" but could not guarantee it. …

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