Inside Lines: Why Lord Coe's latest run could be for mayor of London


Will Seb Coe's close friendship with David Cameron entice him to change his mind about a return to the political arena and run for mayor of London if Boris Johnson, as is widely supposed, stands for Parliament at the next election to further his own leadership ambitions?

There is no doubt the prime minister would snatch Lord Coe's hand off, knowing his candidacy would virtually ensure the City Hall post remaining in Tory hands, such is His Lordship's public esteem in the wake of a euphoric Olympics.

Coe has always maintained that his five years as MP for Falmouth were far from the happiest of his life, but the mayoralty would be different. Although he has said he would never return to non-sporting politics, there is a possible scenario which could bring about a U-turn in 2015.

This is a critical year for Coe, currently chair of the British Olympic Association, who is set to bid for the presidency of world athletics (the International Association of Athletics Federations), a post which would automatically guarantee him membership of the International Olympic Committee, which he is reasonably predicted to head one day.

However, it is strongly rumoured that the present IAAF overlord, the octogenarian Senegalese judge Lamine Diack, may now opt not to retire, a situation that would leave Coe's sporting political aspirations in limbo. Especially as his chief rival, Ukraine's former pole-vault star Sergey Bubka, already an IOC member, has now thrown his hat into the Olympic rings as one of six candidates vying to take over from Jacques Rogge as IOC president in September.

Coe's new role with the BOA is unpaid, but he stands to make around £12 million from the sale of his leisure-management consultancy firm to Chime Communications. Some who attended the recent Tory party spring lunch in London say the tone of a speech he made there suggested his appetite may have been whetted for a comeback to the political rat-race. If this is the case, the Boris baton is ready and waiting.

Luke and learn

You might say Britain's personable Olympic bantamweight gold medallist, Luke Campbell, will make a model pro – he's on the books of a top agency and has done a photo-shoot for Vogue.

He is also something of a role model for youngsters as ambassador for StreetGames, a praiseworthy project which engages thousands of youngsters in what is termed "doorstep sport", including adapting traditional upmarket pastimes such as tennis, cricket and hockey for community use in disadvantaged areas nationwide. Something Sport England, who have invested £3m into the scheme, hope will help turn around figures which show that fewer kids from deprived inner-city areas play sport than others.

"Hopefully these kids will see that I'm just like them, someone from a less well-off area who worked hard to achieve a goal," Hull-born Campbell told us at last week's launch in Stratford. "It goes to show that you don't have to be from a posh area to be good at sport."

The 25-year-old, last seen in Dancing on Ice, and who makes his pro debut in his home town on 13 July, says he is still seeking a trainer. As skating mentor Jayne Torvill will be at ringside, he can always call her up into the corner should things get slippery.

Playing for the shirt

Would you put your shirt on Andy Murray to win Wimbledon? One punter can actually put Murray's own shirt on the possibility after shelling out £15,000 for the one he wore when winning the US Open last year.

Signed by Murray, it fetched twice what London auctioneers Bonhams had anticipated, proceeds going to the Princes Trust charity. Had fight fan Murray been there himself he might well have bid for a piece of fistic history, the original Lonsdale Belt won in 1916 by the appropriately named Johnny Basham, the Welsh welterweight who uniquely faced a manslaughter charge after an opponent died in the ring. He was subsequently acquitted. The belt was valued at £35,000, but unusually there were absolutely no takers.

Arts and Entertainment
Supporting role: at the Supreme Court, Rhodes was accompanied by a famous friend, the actor Benedict Cumberbatch
booksPianist James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to stop the injunction of his memoirs
Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan
filmDheepan, film review
Steven Gerrard scores for Liverpool
peopleComedian star of Ed Sullivan Show was mother to Ben Stiller
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?