Lord Coe has launched his manifesto for election to the IAAF presidency, promising to transform the athletics calendar and attract more young people into the sport.
Coe, a vice-president of athletics’ world governing body, is bidding to succeed Lamine Diack in 2015.
The proposed reforms were outlined by Coe, 58, in London on Wednesday.
He said the plans were designed to increase the appeal of athletics “in a world that is rapidly changing”.
“To many within and outside our sport, our calendar seems disjointed, lacks a narrative and the essential glue to build excitement and a loyal and passionate following,” the two-time Olympic 1500m champion said.
“We need to be more innovative in how we project and present our sport to the world, both in venue and on screen, give serious consideration to an ‘IAAF Street Athletics’ circuit to help reach new audiences, and create a new IAAF division that has the sole purpose of focusing on youth engagement, especially via social media.
The four key elements of Coe’s Manifesto are as follows:
|1. Reforming the world athletics calendar and bringing in city centre ‘street athletics’ competitions|
|2. Maximising commercial growth and focusing Youth engagement|
|3. Increasing resources for anti-doping and creating a new IAAF ethics department|
|4. Changes to the IAAF internal structure to give a greater voice for athletes|
“I believe that it is essential that we open up a real debate and take a long hard look at the ‘product’ of athletics.”
Having led the team that staged the London 2012 Games, Coe has been widely tipped to become the most powerful man in world athletics.
Speaking on BBC 4’s programme today, he said,
“The sport has to look very different…we need to embrace ways of exciting young people. I want the sport to be connected to new audiences”
He has made no secret of his desire to succeed Senegalese Diack, 80, in charge of the International Association of Athletics Federations but is expected to be challenged by fellow vice-president Sergey Bubka, Ukraine’s world pole vault record holder.
The deadline for candidates to register as candidates for the presidency is May 2015. The election will take place at the IAAF Congress in Beijing in August.
COURTESY: BBC Sports