Sebastian Coe

Sebastian Coe


Seb Coe is considered one of the Greatest Runners of All Time. Lord Sebastian Newbold Coe OBE is one of the greatest names of British sport.

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Sebastian Coe: Running Career

Sebastian began his running career at the age of 12 when he joined Sheffield’s Hallamshire Harriers. Between studies at Tapton and Abbeydale Grange Schools, Sebastian won county and schools championships at 3,000m, 1,500m and cross country. In 1973 his father and coach Peter predicted that by 1980 his son would slice five seconds off the then 1500m world record. In fact Sebastian sensationally broke three world records; including the 1500m, in 1979 in just 41 days: the 800m and mile in Oslo and the 1500m in Zurich. This meant Sebastian was the first man in more than 50 years to set world records at both 800m and 1500m.

Sebastian added the 1000m record to his list in Oslo, making him the holder of four world records simultaneously. In 1980 Sebastian and his British rival Steve Ovett dominated middle distance events. At The Moscow Olympics, despite being predicted to win the 800m, Sebastian came second to Ovett; but bounced back to snatch gold in the 1500m, leaving Ovett coming third.

In 1981 Sebastian broke records again at 800m (Florence), 1000m (Oslo) and the mile (Zurich and Brussels); bringing his total to eight. At the 1984 Olympics Sebastian set an Olympic record at 1500m and took silver in the 800m. And at the European Championships in 1986, Sebastian won gold in the 800m and silver in the 1500m.

Political Career

Since his last race in September 1989, Sebastian has pursued a political career; becoming Conservative MP for Falmouth and Camborne in 1992, a Parliamentary Private Secretary in 1994. In 1997 he was appointed Private Secretary to the Leader of the Opposition, William Hague MP. Coe has served as Vice Chairman of the Sports Council (1986-89), steward of the British Boxing Board of Control (1994-98); and a member of the Sport for All Commission and International Olympic Committee. Sebastian Coe was awarded the OBE in 1991.

Sebastian Coe: London 2012

He headed the successful London bid to host the 2012 Summer Olympics; and became chairman of the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games. In 2007, he was also elected a vice-president of the International Association of Athletics Federations. On 25 August 2011, he was re-elected for another four-year term.

In 2012, Coe was appointed Pro-Chancellor at Loughborough University; where he had been an undergraduate, and is also a member of the University’s governing body. November 2012 saw him appointed chairman of the British Olympic Association. In 2012 he was of one of 24 athletes inducted as inaugural members of the International Association of Athletics Federations Hall of Fame. Coe was presented with the Lifetime Achievement award at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year in December 2012.

He has written five books and is an experienced broadcaster and public speaker.

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