Verbruggen to step down as SportAccord President

Saturday, 26 May 2012
By Tom Degun at the SportAccord Convention in Québec City

Hein Verbruggen_May_25May 26 - Hein Verbruggen (pictured left), the President of SportAccord, is set to step down from the role at the SportAccord Convention in St Petersburg next year with his successor set to be elected at the prestigious gathering in the Russian city.

Verbruggen was re-elected President for another four year-term just last year at the SportAccord Convention in London, but has decided that he does not want to complete the full period of office, which would officially end in 2015.

The 71-year-old from the Netherlands, who served as International Cycling Union (UCI) President from 1991 to 2005, is well known in the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as he was a member throughout his time at the cycling's governing body.

He lost his membership when he resigned from the position, but was reinstated during the Turin 2006 Winter Olympics.

After Beijing 2008, Verbruggen resigned as an IOC member and was made an honorary member.

The announcement here today at the SportAccord General Assembly could spark a flurry of activity as the race to decide who will take on his role begins.

"I am a 71-year-old man now and I am getting old," Verbruggen told insidethegames.

"I am proud to have achieved many things in the position but there is still a lot of work to do and a lot of projects to develop.

"I think these are best left to a new President."

Pat McQuaid_May_25
International Judo Federation President Marius Vizer has been named as a possible candidate to replace Verbruggen, as has the current UCI President Pat McQuaid (pictured above).

McQuaid is known to be close to Verbruggen because of their UCI link and place on the SportAccord Council.

Should the Irishman get the role, it would echo 2005 when he succeeded the Dutchman as UCI President.

According to the SportAccord Statute, the election of the President must take place at the General Assembly.

"Election of the President is held on the basis of the absolute majority of the votes validly cast," says the Statute.

"In the event the absolute majority is not reached in the first round, a second round will be organised, under the rule of the relative majority [the highest number of votes].

"In the event of a tie, a third round shall take place after the elimination of the candidate who has obtained the least number of votes in the second round; this procedure shall continue until only one candidate remains.

"In case of persisting equality between candidates, they shall be separated by drawing lots."

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