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This joint announcement today marks the occasions respectively of the Oceania Area’s IAAF Centenary Gala, Cairns, Australia at which IOC Member Sergey Bubka is guest of honour, and a leg of the Olympic Torch Relay, Sheffield, England, a city where Sebastian Coe, the Chairman of LOCOG, the organising committee of the Games of XXX Olympiad London 2012, was brought up and will be one of the torch bearers.
Bubka, starting with a surprise victory in the Pole Vault as a 19-year-old at the inaugural IAAF World Championships in 1983, went on to triumph on the next five occasions as well. No other athlete has ever won six gold medals in the same individual discipline. Bubka, the 1988 Olympic champion also set 35 World records in his event, breaking the outdoor World record 17 times and the indoor record on 18 occasions; both World records remain in his possession today.
Coe, the two-time Olympic 1500m champion became a true superstar of the sport in 1979 when he set three World records in 41 days, running 800m and Mile records at separate meetings in Oslo before going into new territory over 1500m in Zurich. Four more World records followed in 1981, with his 800m time lasting until 1997 and his 1000m mark not bettered for more than 18 years. His Olympic titles in 1980 and 84 were accompanied by silver medals at 800m.
"I am delighted that two more of my Council colleagues will join the inaugural membership of the IAAF Hall of Fame," commented IAAF President Lamine Diack. "With the creation of the Hall of Fame we set out to honour the lifetime achievements of our greatest athletes, and heighten public awareness of our sport and its rich history. In Sergey and Seb we have two great champions and record breakers whose contribution to our sport’s success cannot be underestimated."
Click here to read Bubka and Coe’s profiles in the Hall of Fame Members’ section of the IAAF website - http://www.iaaf.org/mini/hof/Members/Members.aspx - and to discover the other inaugural members who have so far been announced.
To mark the IAAF Centenary, a total of 24 athletes will become inaugural Members of the IAAF Hall of Fame in 2012, with the Official Induction Ceremony taking place at the IAAF Centenary Gala in Barcelona on Saturday 24 November 2012.