Sebastian Coe elected as new chairman of British Olympic Association
Last Updated: 08/11/12 12:18pm
Lord Coe: Will succeed Lord Moynihan as new BOA chairman
Sebastian Coe has been elected as the new chairman of the British Olympic Association.
Lord Coe, the London 2012 chairman, was unopposed for the election to succeed Lord Moynihan.
He was elected at a meeting of all the British Olympic sports in London on Wednesday afternoon.
Lord Coe said: "Following the tremendous impact of the London 2012 Games, the BOA has an important role to play in ensuring the growth of the Olympic Movement throughout the UK and the continued success and support of Team GB at future Olympic Games.
"I believe the BOA is uniquely positioned to work collaboratively with partners across government and sport to ensure there is a meaningful legacy resulting from the London 2012 Games - a legacy that positively impacts every level of sport and continues to inspire young people around the UK to choose sport.
"I am committed to making sure the benefits of hosting the Olympic and
Paralympic Games are maximised and this role gives me an excellent platform to continue to serve and promote British Olympic sport, both in the UK, and globally."
Coe also vowed he would fight for tougher penalties for drugs cheats.
Lord Coe said he was disappointed when the BOA's lifetime ban for athletes found guilty of doping was overturned in court in May, and that he will seek to enforce a zero tolerance approach.
"I am committed to making sure the benefits of hosting the Olympic and Paralympic Games are maximised and this role gives me an excellent platform to continue to serve and promote British Olympic sport, both in the UK, and globally."
The Lance Armstrong scandal has focused attention on doping in sport more intensely than ever over the last two months.
The Australian Olympic committee is considering obliging athletes to sign a legally-binding document saying that they have not used banned drugs in order to be selected for the team and anyone making a false statement could result in up to five years in jail.
Coe said he would consider all options."You know where I come from over drugs. I've been battling that for as long as I've effectively been a competitor.
"My stance is still non-negotiable and this organisation was quite right to believe that it has to be within the interests and power of the organisation to decide what is best for that organisation.
"99% of the athletes supported that bylaw and I am sorry that we weren't able to uphold it. We will need to think how we will adapt to that landscape.
"I will chair an organisation that will always take a zero tolerance approach to drug abuse in sport but we have to recognise that we are in a much more complex and complicated legal landscape than we were 30 years ago."
The World Anti-Doping Agency - who took the BOA to court over their lifetime ban - will announce changes to their code in January.
WADA currently have a two-year minimum ban for serious doping offences, and the BOA are among those who want the minimum suspension lengthened to four years.
Coe succeeds outgoing BOA chairman Lord Moynihan in the unpaid post, and he made it clear he will have a different approach in terms of the British team.
Moynihan brought in Sir Clive Woodward as a highly-paid director of elite performance but Coe said the BOA's priority should be as organisers of the team.
He added: "This is not an organisation that delivers elite level sportsmen and women, that's the role of the federations and UK Sport through their funded programmes.
"This organisation has the monumental responsibility to manage those teams and to promote Olympism throughout the country."
Woodward announced he was leaving the organisation last month - his position had already been put under review as part of a cost-cutting programme implemented by BOA chief executive Andy Hunt after the London 2012 Games.
The BOA has a substantial deficit, perhaps more than £4million, after its spending on London but Moynihan claimed that should be covered by an expected £5million windfall from the London 2012 organising committee (LOCOG).
Any surplus from the running for the Games will see £5million go to the BOA and £2.5million to ParalympicsGB before the Government has any claim on what remains.
LOCOG say they are working towards breaking even, but Moynihan said he was confident that there would be a surplus. The fact that Coe is now chairman of both organisations will certainly help the BOA's prospects.
Moynihan said: "I have comfort that the surplus distribution will be paid, that LOCOG will not be making a loss but that is my personal view."