VIDEO: Coastal Massachusetts town eyes Olympic sailing events

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New Bedford, Mass., mayor Jon Mitchell is touting Buzzards Bay as the optimal place to hold the Olympic sailing event should Boston win the bid for the 2024 Summer Olympics.

Mitchell announced the formation of a planning committee to consider the possibility. It includes Olympic trialist Andy Herlihy, who also works for the Community Boating Center Inc. in New Bedford.

"New Bedford is really a magical, special spot to go sailing," Mitchell told a Boston NBC affiliate. "The breeze is consistent. The water is warm."

US Sailing executive director Jack Gierhart is also on the committee. He explained why New Bedford might win over Newport if Rhode Island decides to compete.

"I'm not sure if the Boston bid committee has considered anything outside the state," Gierhart said.

Many Olympians have raced in the Buzzards Bay Regatta, the largest multi-class regatta in the United States. It's not the same as the Olympics, but it's a start.

Mitchell said Fort Taber is a possible location for spectators. At the fort grounds there are the old buildings and a lot of land that the mayor said could be used for a permanent sailing structure.

"We are confident that New Bedford will strengthen Boston's bid for the Olympic Games," Mitchell said.

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