Happy Olympic Day!


The Big Read









World Taekwondo Federation President battling to use sport for greater good

World Taekwondo Federation President battling to use sport for greater good

Sport has never been bigger business or a more prominent strand in the fabric of human affairs. At the same time, millions of people have been left trapped leading lives of grinding poverty, chronic insecurity or worse by the unpredictable economic and political convulsions that mark our times.

So it is hardly surprising that sports leaders find themselves under more and more pressure nowadays to put something back. To contribute more than an entertaining spectacle to a wider society whose support enables athletes, entourage members and officials to lead enviably comfortable, purposeful lives.



Rio 2016 still faces problems but they are right to believe first Olympics in South America will be success

Rio 2016 still faces problems but they are right to believe first Olympics in South America will be success

Last March I came to Rio de Janeiro in what marked one of my first trips outside Europe with insidethegames. Never having been to Brazil before I was rather wowed by everything I saw, and particularly by the city’s glamour, colour and vibrancy. I was consequently rather less sceptical than perhaps I should have been about everything I was told, especially in relation to insistences they would still meet a bid-time legacy commitment to reducing water pollution levels across the city by 80 per cent.


Twenty years on - the extraordinary triple jump world record of a "skinny-looking, very ordinary guy"

Twenty years on - the extraordinary triple jump world record of a "skinny-looking, very ordinary guy"

Twenty years ago this week a “skinny-looking, very ordinary guy” - his own description - hit the take-off board in Gothenburg’s Ullevi stadium at high speed. By the time his effort came to an end he had left a mark in the sand which, while it was soon smoothed away by an official brush, remains to this day in the form of a world triple jump record of 18.29 metres. Jonathan Edwards, ordinary guy, had done something extraordinary.




Olympic Solidarity - the Movement’s “complex but simple” cash distribution machine

Olympic Solidarity - the Movement’s “complex but simple” cash distribution machine

For every $6 (£3.70/€5.20) of revenue from the sale of broadcasting rights to the Games that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) collected in its last four-year cycle, $1 (£0.60/€0.90) is being channelled via Olympic Solidarity (OS) on its way back out.

This amounted to $663 million (£470 million/€590 million) from rights for that Vancouver 2010 and London 2012 quadrennium - a substantial wad of cash by any reckoning.


IAAF Presidential candidate Coe looks backwards and forwards at Bislett and in Baku

IAAF Presidential candidate Coe looks backwards and forwards at Bislett and in Baku

The celebrations which marked the 50th Anniversary running of Oslo’s Bislett Games offered many great athletes the opportunity to reflect on the days of their youth. As the cavalcade of classic open-topped Ford Mustangs made its slow circuit of the Bislett Stadium track before the main meeting began, the waving passengers – John Walker, Roger Moens, Javier Sotomayor, Jan Zelezny, Ingrid Kristiansen, Henry Rono - received warm waves of applause. For many of those rising in acclaim, these middle aged but still largely trim and athletic figures had created indelible memories on this oval patch of ground.

No one was applauding more warmly than Svein Arne Hansen, recently elected President of European Athletics, who has been involved in every Bislett Games since 1965 in various forms, serving as meeting director from 1985 to 2009.