Coe running for Britain's top Olympic job

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After successfully overseeing the London Games, Sebastian Coe wants to take charge of Britain's mission to produce future Olympic champions.

The two-time Olympic middle-distance champion announced Monday he will be a candidate to succeed Colin Moynihan as chairman of the British Olympic Association.

''I'm happy for my name to go forward,'' Coe said after a parade through London by Britain's Olympic and Paralympic athletes. ''I was asked formally and on this day of all days why wouldn't you want to help. ... I have always had a huge debt of gratitude to the British Olympic Association. They fought to allow me to go to Moscow.''

Coe won the first of his 1,500 meters Olympic titles in the Russian capital in 1980 after defying calls to boycott of the games following the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

Coe is set to run unopposed for the BOA chairmanship, although potential rivals have until Sept. 24 to register their interest.

''I don't think there is anyone else you could put there,'' said Zara Phillips, the granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II who won a silver medal for Britain in equestrian.

But Coe might not stay in the job for long if elected. Already an IAAF vice president, Coe has said he wants to replace Lamine Diack as head of track and field's governing body in three years.

Coe's stock in international sports has never been higher. The Olympics and Paralympics were staged without significant problems after he spent almost a decade working on the bid and then headed the organizing committee.

''It is the first morning since October 2003 that I have woken up without having to think about whether we are going to win a bid or whether we are going to be able to deliver a games,'' Coe said a day after the Paralympic closing ceremony. ''So it was an unusual morning for me, standing on the Mall saluting the most extraordinary people.''


Rob Harris can be reached at http://twitter.com/RobHarris

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