The European Athletic Association have taken the bold move to set up a task force to examine the credibility of European Records.
European Athletics President Svein Arne Hansen said, “Claiming a European Record – after being crowned European Champion – is the pinnacle of our sport in Europe. The holders of these records should be aspirational heroes whose performances are respected and recognised as beyond question by their fellow athletes and the fans of our sport. They should be 100 percent believable and credible. However, there is a view that this is currently not the case with some of the performances on the European Record list, and so I have ordered this review.”
The task force will analyse the situation over the coming months before reporting back to the European Athletics Executive Board by September 2017 with their recommended changes and rationale.
“I have been in regular contact with IAAF president Sebastian Coe on this matter and the IAAF will monitor this work closely before deciding on any actions at the world level. This is obviously a contentious and difficult issue that they will be looking into, so the task force will need to take advice and guidance from all our Member Federations, and IAAF and European Athletics Commissions, while also receiving input from the media, athletes past and present, and the public to ensure maximum debate and transparency before they arrive at any conclusions,” said President Hansen.
The task force will use all available media to ensure the optimal integrity is applied to this important historical work. Members of the sporting public far and wide are invited to contribute any comments or suggestions to email@example.com or through the social media twitter handle of the task force Chair @pierceathletics.
The Executive Board has appointed the following persons to lead the task force to examine all European Records:
Chair: Pierce O’Callaghan (IRL) – Member of the European Athletics & IAAF Competition Commissions and Head of Operations for London 2017.
Members: Dr Clemens Prokop (GER) – President of German Athletics Federation, Director of the Regensburg Regional Court and publisher of Sport und Recht [Sport and Law] magazine.
Ruud Kok (NED) – Board Member of Dutch Athletics Federation from 2007-2016, Managing partner PwC.
Gianni Merlo (ITA) – President of International Association of Sports Journalists (AIPS).
Mirko Jalava (FIN) – European Athletics Statistician.
Bill Glad (GBR) – European Athletics’ Head of the President’s Cabinet.
Imre Matrahazi (HUN) – IAAF Head of Technical Services.