London 2012 plans and 2017 bid running strong

By Myles Edwards.

Today, the IAAF gave their seal of approval to London’s 2017 World Athletics Championships bid, as Sebastian Coe shrugged off the importance of Tottenham Hotspur’s attempts to prise the Olympic Stadium away from West Ham United.

Concluding their two day visit to London today, the IAAF Evaluation Commission for the 2017 World Championships spoke of the ‘passion and commitment’ shown by UK Athletics towards hosting their main event.

Senior Vice President Bob Hersh said:

“I would like to underline that we have all been very impressed by the passion and commitment of the UK Athletics team and the technical expertise evidenced in the presentation that was made to us yesterday.  It is also very heartening to see that the commitment of our IAAF Member Federation to hosting the 2017 World Championships is fully supported by the British Government and the City ofLondon.”

He went on to reiterate the importance that the running track will remain in place after the Olympic Games next year:

“It was extremely helpful to have the opportunity to meet with Lord Sebastian Coe, Hugh Robertson, Boris Johnson and Baroness Margaret Ford and to receive strong guarantees that a track will remain in the Olympic Stadium after 2012.”

He also ensured the IAAF were aware that The Hammers promise to keep the track was more than enough convince them that they had chosen the best resident.  Despite the attempts of Tottenham Hotspur FC to gain a judicial review on the decision which granted West Ham United the use of the Olympic stadium, Lord Coe said:

“The Tottenham issue is an irrelevance and it was made very clear to the IAAF that it was an irrelevance.  Not my words but the words of the chairman of the evaluation commission – as far as he is concerned this is a issue that has been resolved. The track is there to stay.”

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