Jessica Ennis towers over London to mark IAAF arrival
Jessica Ennis is hopeful London will be awarded the rights to host the 2017 World Athletics Championships
Jessica Ennis has admitted her excitement at the prospect of London hosting the 2017 World Athletics Championships after she was unveiled as an ambassador for the bid via a giant projection onto Tower Bridge.
The IAAF Evaluation Commission arrives in London this week for what is a crucial step in the bidding process – and Ennis is hoping her support can boost the captial’s chances in the face of competition from Doha, Qatar.
“Great Britain has such a strong history of supporting athletics and our fans are the most passionate and knowledgeable in the world,” said Ennis.
“My fondest memories have come at the World Championships and I would love for athletes from all over the globe to have the same opportunity in London’s fantastic Olympic Stadium in 2017.”
The heptathlete added: “I’m proud to be supporting the London bid as an official ambassador. It’s amazing how many athletes have got behind the London 2017 bid already; it’s where we want to compete.”
The first step for the Commission, chaired by IAAF Senior Vice-President Bob Hersh, will be a meeting with Lord Sebastian Coe, Hugh Robertson, Boris Johnson and Baroness Margaret Ford to receive legal guarantees on being able to host the Championships in the Olympic Stadium.
The bid committee will then present the technical proposals for the Championships, including London’s programme and plans for organisation, transport, security, medical facilities, marketing and communications.
The Commission will also visit a number of hotels and venues, as well as touring the Olympic Stadium.
Chairman of UK Athletics Ed Warner said: “Our bid is strong and has the wholehearted support and involvement of the Government and the Mayor of London.
“The image of Jessica, one of our great athletes, projected onto one of London’s most iconic buildings sent shivers down my spine. It provides a great welcome to the Evaluation Commission and shows just how big athletics is in London ““ literally.”
Following its visit to Doha later this week, the Evaluation Commission will deliver its report to the IAAF Council, with the successful bidder to be announced in Monaco on 11 November.