Hansen meets with stars to discuss ambassador programme

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European Athletics President Svein Arne Hansen met with retired star athletes Jenny Meadows, Diane Modahl and Andreas Thorkildsen in London on Friday to discuss the development of European Athletics’ athlete ambassador programme and the launch of the I Run Clean anti-doping education programme.

As part of his election manifesto ‘Leading Change’, Hansen said European Athletics needs to use more current and former athletes to promote European Athletics’ events and programmes.

“Jenny, Diane and Andreas are all great champions and true lovers of athletics who are enthusiastic to help European Athletics promote the sport and its messages to other athletes and to the public,” he said.

“We had a very interesting exchange of ideas about how they and other stars could serve as ambassadors and assist in taking our corporate communications to a new level.”

According to Hansen a top priority for the ambassadors will be to help promote the new online interactive anti-doping education programme, I Run Clean, which is being developed by a European Athletics project team and the Norwegian media company Transform.

The programme is scheduled for release in the summer of 2017.

“The I Run Clean programme represents some big changes that were promised in my manifesto and a real commitment from our ambassadors will be necessary to communicate about it effectively,” said Hansen.

“We intend to eventually make completion of the programme mandatory for participation in any European Athletics Championships and athletes in every country will have to adjust.”

European Athletics also intends to offer I Run Clean to its Member Federations for use with clubs, schools and other grassroots organisations.

Hansen said he would brief the European Athletics Executive Board on the next steps of his plans for working with the ambassadors when the Board meets in Belgrade prior to the European Athletics Indoor Championships.

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