1924 is an exceptional year for France. After the first Winter Olympics in Chamonix, the International Olympic Committee
chooses Paris to host the upcoming summer Games. For this VIII Olympiad, the
French National Olympic Committee decides to build Olympic Stadium in Colombes,
a few kilometres outside Paris. A risky gamble that pays off.
The event is an instant success with the public: the stadium, which has a capacity of 60 000, is regularly filled by increasingly
enthusiastic crowds. Media coverage is of international proportions, with around
one thousand journalists present throughout the event.
1924 sees major developments which constitute milestones in the history of the Games. These include the introduction of the Olympic motto
“Citius, Altius, Fortius” (faster, higher, stronger) and the closing ceremony
tradition of flying three flags, i.e. those of the IOC, the present host country
and the country which is to organise the next Games. For the first time, also,
the 3 089 athletes are provided accommodation in an Olympic Village.
This VIII Olympiad is to be the last one organised under the Presidency of Pierre de Coubertin. In 1925, the Baron steps down as IOC President, stating
that he has “completed his work”.