Secret plan: Speed up Opening parade

Secret plan: Speed up Opening parade

Published Jul. 24, 2012 1:00 a.m. ET

Olympic organizers have a plan for speeding up the march of athletes during Friday's opening ceremony. Just don't ask what it is.

IOC executive director Gilbert Felli said Tuesday there will be ''some device to try to accelerate the march'' by thousands of athletes in the Olympic Stadium.

Felli confirmed that part of the plan involves playing faster music, but wouldn't give away anything else.

''It's part of the show, so I'm not going to tell you,'' he said.


Earlier, IOC member Dick Pound asked London organizing chief Sebastian Coe what was being done to deal with the potential ''shambles'' of athletes holding up the march by taking pictures and tweeting on their phones.

''I hear what you say and we do need to keep teams marching without spoiling the atmosphere,'' Coe said. ''I would appeal for any help that national Olympic committees can give us to get through this in a way that is respectful but still allows us to maintain momentum.''

Felli said he will meet with national Olympic committee chiefs on Thursday to finalize plans for the march, part of the scheduled three-hour ceremony directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Danny Boyle.

The IOC has pressed London organizers to make sure the show — which starts at 9 p.m. London time — finishes by midnight so that athletes can get to bed at a reasonable hour and spectators can get public transportation home.

Boyle already has cut a segment involving stunt bikes to shorten the show.