Sebastian Coe elected sixth IAAF president

August 19th, 2015 by | Posted in The Scene | Tags:

BEIJING, CHINA - AUGUST 19: Newly elected IAAF president Lord Sebastian Coe stands with outgoing president Lamine Diack during the 50th IAAF Congress at the China National Convention Centre, CNCC on August 19, 2015 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images for IAAF)
BEIJING, CHINA – AUGUST 19: Newly elected IAAF president Lord Sebastian Coe stands with outgoing president Lamine Diack during the 50th IAAF Congress at the China National Convention Centre, CNCC on August 19, 2015 in Beijing, China. (Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images for IAAF)

Olympic gold-medallist and former member of parliament in the United Kingdom, Sebastian Coe, has been elected as the sixth president of the International Association of Athletics Federations.

Leading up to Saturday’s start of the world championships of athletics, the IAAF held their council meeting, the top priority this year being to select Coe or Sergey Bubka as the organization’s new president. Coe was elected with 115 votes to Bubka’s 92. Each country in the organization, regardless of size or political weight, is given a single vote. Bubka is a former Olympic pole vault champion

“I am deeply honoured that our sport has placed its trust in me,” said Coe, who has been a vice president in the IAAF since 2007, after the vote. “There is no job I want to do more – nor with greater commitment.”

Likely Coe’s first order of business after next week’s world championships will be cleaning up athletics’ tattered image. In the past year the sport has been shaken by failed doping tests and allegations that as many as one third of the athletes who have won international medals in recent years have violated doping regulations.

Coe was pivotal in making the 2012 Olympics in London a success, being the chairman of the Games.

The 58-year-old replaces Lamine Diack, the Senegalese 82-year-old who held the position since 1999, four terms.