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Coe hopes to follow Beijing lead

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Video - Coe outlines aims for 2012 Paralympics

Sebastian Coe says he is confident the London 2012 Olympic Organising Committee can build on the success of the recent Beijing games.

"It is a massive responsibility to follow Beijing as a host city," said Lord Coe, the Committee chairman.

"We want to use the Olympics and Paralympics to both excite and encourage more young people into sport.

"Beijing delivered wonderful elite sport, superb organisation, stunning venues and spectacular ceremonies."

A detailed review and analysis will now take place following the success of the Games in Beijing.

Our organisation is readied to the concept of a fully integrated event with the same terms of delivery.

Lord Coe
A conference alongside the Beijing Organising Committee for the Olympic Games, the International Olympic Committee and the International Paralympic Committee is set to meet in November.

And with 150 observers from London having scrutinised both the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Coe admits he was impressed with China's organisation.

"It (China's Games) has challenged us to go and deliver a great opening ceremony.

"Our organisation is readied to the concept of a fully integrated event with the same terms of delivery.

"I think that's an important concept and it makes for a better Games particularly from an athletes' perspective," added Coe, who was speaking from Beijing for London's handover segment in the closing ceremony of the Paralympic Games.

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"We want to deliver the same full stadiums in London and we will look at the way we present Paralympic sport."

Coe, a two-time Olympic 1,500m champion and 12-time world record holder, is also particularly mindful of athletes' welfare when the Games arrive in Britain's capital.

"We have to remember all the time - and not just with words - that we've got to put the athletes' interest first," he explained.

"I can relate to it after sitting in a stadium when I was a competitor watching an outstanding performance in my own event."

Meanwhile, Mayor of London Boris Johnson paid tribute to the British Paralympic team and hopes the London Games will be the most accessible ever.

"The fantastic achievements of our Paralympic team at the Beijing Games have surpassed the country's wildest expectations, adding to the pride we all felt watching Team GB reel in their haul of medals last month," said Johnson.

"They have delivered for us, ­now we must deliver for them, and for all disabled Londoners and visitors.

"I want everyone who comes London to enjoy every aspect of their stay, including Paralympians, disabled spectators, and anyone who may have difficulty moving around the capital."

see also
Weir storms to second Games gold
16 Sep 08 |  Paralympics
A-Z of Paralympic classification
28 Aug 08 |  Paralympics
Paralympics on the BBC
25 Aug 08 |  Paralympics
GB Paralympic team for Beijing
24 Jul 08 |  Paralympics
Lord Coe returns to Olympic roots
11 Jul 08 |  London 2012


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