Join the conversation:

Sebastian Coe predicts records will tumble on ‘very fast’ athletics track at Rio 2016

Sebastian Coe predicts records will tumble on ‘very fast’ athletics track at Rio 2016

Posted by PanamericanWorld on May 17, 2016

Athletics legend Sebastian Coe believes the new running track laid for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games has all the ingredients for competitors to break records this August.

Coe, a double Olympic champion in the 1500m and now president of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), paid his first visit to the Olympic Stadium in Rio on Sunday (15 May) to observe the athletics test event.

Work on the brand new blue running track has recently been completed at the venue and Coe, who also led the organising committee for the London 2012 Olympic Games, predicted stunning performances when the 60,000-capacity venue is packed to the rafters with screaming fans.

  

Asked if he thought the new track would inspire record-breaking performances, Coe told Rio2016.com: “I sincerely hope so. It’s a very fast surface – Mondo is a great provider of tracks and have been our partner for many years. So yes, with a full stadium of noisy, passionate track and field fans, the athletes will raise their game and rise to the occasion.

“It will be a very good event and the message to people is ‘come and watch it’. You will see some of the most outstanding athletes not just of their generation, but in the history of the sport.”

     

Coe added that the feedback he had received from the IAAF staff at the test event had been positive. “I’ve spent time with our technical delegates and they’re very pleased with how these championships have been delivered for the athletes,” he said. “And the great thing about a test event is that you go away and absorb all those things that you need to absorb and learn from over the next 80 days.”

Coe took the train from the iconic Central do Brasil station to the Olympic Stadium, a journey which thousands of athletics and football fans will make during the Games. Asked about his humble choice of transport, he said to reporters: “I use the train every day, so why not use it to get here?”

Coe was hosted at the Olympic Stadium by his two friends from the Rio 2016 organising committee, president Carlos Nuzman and executive director of sport Agberto Guimarães. The Englishman shares an important moment of Olympic history with Guimarães – the 800m final at the Moscow 1980 Olympics, in which Coe was beaten into second place by his great rival and fellow Briton Steve Ovett, while the Brazilian finished fourth.

“We have good memories of that race but maybe it could have been better, for both of us,” said a smiling Guimarães. “One place better for the two of us,” joked Coe, before adding: “But we’re too old now to worry about that… it was on black and white television.”

    

Coe recalled there being “a massive crowd” of more than 100,000 people the Luzhniki Stadium, while Guimarães gave an insight into the huge sense of occasion the Olympic Games provides for athletes. “I have never seen a crowd as big as that,” he said. “I remember feeling as I entered the stadium that someone was pushing me towards the track, and maybe I wanted to go back.”

Link To Full Article: 

Facebook comments



Monthly newsletter featuring articles hand picked by our country managers from the best content across PanamericanWorld.



Monthly newsletter featuring articles hand picked by our country managers from the best content across the Caribbean Region on PanamericanWorld.

PANAMERICANWORLD COUNTRIES