France could host the Winter Olympics in 2030 if two projects merge, Guy Drut has said ©Getty Images

French International Olympic Committee (IOC) member Guy Drut has said the country could bid for the 2030 Winter Games with a combined effort from Rhône-Alpes and the Southern Alps.

Drut said projects in the two areas would need to merge if France wanted to host the next Winter Olympics and Paralympics.

"If we can do it, we have a small chance, a chance, to get them," Drut said to L'Equipe.

"If the request is made only by the Southern Alps, it will not work. 

"We need a candidacy bringing together the Southern Alps and the Northern Alps."

France has a number of ski resorts across the two areas which have hosted top level international events.

They include Chamonix, Courchevel, Grenoble, Albertville, La Plagne, Megève and Val d'Isere.

Seventy-two-year-old Drut, who won gold in the 110 metres hurdles at the Montreal 1976 Summer Olympics, also suggested that Nice could hold ice sports, according to L'Equipe.

No candidacy or interest has yet been announced by the French National Olympic and Sports Committee.

But Drut said any bid would be supported by Martin Fourcade, France's five-time Olympic biathlon champion and a fellow IOC member.

Guy Drut said ice sports could be hosted in Mediterranean city Nice ©Getty Images
Guy Drut said ice sports could be hosted in Mediterranean city Nice ©Getty Images

In January, Chamonix, in the Rhône-Alpes, ruled itself out of a joint bid for the 2030 Winter Olympics with Switzerland and Italy.

Éric Fournier, the Mayor of Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, said the plan was "not on the agenda".

The IOC had wanted to confirm a host for 2030 at this year's delayed Session in Mumbai, but those plans were pushed back to 2024.

Swedish capital Stockholm has confirmed its interest with feasibility studies underway.

Sapporo in Japan was the frontrunner but organisers decided to pause the bid due to the Tokyo 2020 bribery scandal, and are now expected to turn their attentions to 2034.

A bid from Vancouver in Canada was also shelved due to a lack of Government support.

Salt Lake City in the United States remains in contention but said it would prefer to bid for 2034 to avoid a clash with Los Angeles 2028 sponsorships.

France has hosted the Winter Olympics three times, in Chamonix in 1924, Grenoble in 1968 and Albertville in 1992.