Germany and France are to co-host the 2017 ice hockey world championships. Cologne is to be the main venue and will host the championship match.
At its annual congress in Stockholm, Sweden on Friday the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) said the joint bid for the championships by Paris and Cologne beat the other joint bid from Copenhagen, Denmark and Riga, Latvia.
The German-French bid, under the slogan “together for 2017” received 63 votes from delegates. The Copenhagen-Riga bid managed 45 votes.
Germany last hosted the championships in 2010. France last held them in 1951 - again in Paris. The dates are already set for 2017 - May 5-21.
Cologne as the main venue will host one preliminary-round group, two quarterfinal games, the semifinals and medal games. The Lanxess Arena played host to the IIHF Ice Hockey World Championships in 2001 and 2010. The arena was opened in 1998 and is the largest venue for indoor sports by capacity in Europe with 18,500 seats for hockey. The Palais Omnisport indoor stadium in Paris-Bercy can seat 15,000 fans.
“It was quite a battle as the Danish and Latvian delegation always offer a fair competition. It was a nice experience to work together,” Franz Reindl, the General Secretary of the German Ice Hockey Association said via the IIHF website.
It is the eighth time Germany has hosted the championships. France has hosted the event twice, in Chamonix 1930 and in Paris 1951 in addition to three Olympic Winter Games - in 1924, 1968 1992.
Cologne will also host the 2017 IIHF Annual Congress and Paris is to hold the 2016 IIHF Semi-Annual Congress.
The announcement comes on the heels of Germany's disappointing exit from the 2013 World Championship in Sweden and Finland earlier this week.
jm/dr (dpa, sid)