The Australian powerbroker hopes to return to an IOC vice-presidency for a term until after the 2024 Paris Olympics – a period vital to southeast Queensland’s pitch to become an Olympic host.
Coates was on the IOC executive board from 2009 and a vice-president from 2013 to 2017.
Under IOC rules executives who have served eight years must stand down for three years. That period has expired for Coates, who has nominated to return as an IOC vice-president.
“I’m a candidate for the vice-presidency … and that comes up whenever the IOC next meet,” Coates told AAP.
“I hope to be elected. That will take me through as a vice-president through to the Paris Games (in 2024).”
The IOC vote for fresh executives was to have been held at the Tokyo Games this July. But those Olympics have been postponed until next year because of the global coronavirus pandemic.
Should Coates be elected as one of four IOC vice-presidents, he will be perfectly placed to drive support for south-east Queensland’s bid to host the 2032 Games.
The host city will be announced by 2025 at the latest, with bids expected from Germany, India, Spain and jointly, South and North Korea, among others.
Coates said Queensland’s bid – encompassing Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast – was well advanced.
“You have got to always respect your competitors, but it is a good bid – it’s very good,” Coates said.
The IOC recently altered protocols to reduce costs of bidding, and hosting, an Olympics.
Termed ‘the new norm’, the changes encouraged potential hosts to use existing sports infrastructure wherever possible.
The Queensland bid estimated costs of staging the Games at $5.3 billion, which will be offset by the IOC providing a minimum $2.5 billion contribution.
“It wouldn’t work financially but for the IOC’s new norm,” Coates said.
“About 85 per cent of the venues are there.
“And we can now have a single (athletes) village on the Gold Coast and one on the northern side of Brisbane.
“That would enable the athletes to be living, on average, about 20 minutes from their venues so it’s a good solution for the athletes and it’s made possible by the changes the IOC has made.
“There will be other candidates. But this is a good bid.”
Coates will become the longest-serving president of the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) when his tenure soon extends to 30 years.
He turns 70 two days before the AOC’s annual meeting on May 9.
Sir Harold Alderson – coincidentally, a rower like Coates – was AOC chair from 1944-73.
The postponement of the Tokyo Games automatically extended Coates’ term as president by a year, to May 2022.
And at the looming general meeting, he’s expected to be appointed as an honorary life president of the AOC, a permanent position without voting powers.
“The passion is still there,” Coates said.
“You reflect on the (AOC’s) centenary and all the athletes who have provided the wonderful performances over that last century, even going back earlier to (Australia’s first Olympian Edwin) Flack.
“If you couldn’t be inspired by helping produce the next generation of those athletes, there is something wrong with you.”
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