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ALFONS HÖRMANN is the president of the German Olympic Sports Association (DOSB). The 53-year-old was elected president on a one-year interim basis on Dec. 7. He replaced THOMAS BACH, who was elected IOC president two months earlier, at the helm of the organization. Hörmann, who has also been the president of the German Ski Federation (DSV) since '05, will stand for re-election at the DOSB's next regularly scheduled election in December. Hörmann talked to SBD Global about bringing the Olympic Games back to Germany for the first time since the 1972 Munich Games, changes the IOC needs to make and the biggest challenges facing the DOSB.
On future German Olympic bids ...
Alfons Hörmann: First of all we have not yet decided if we are eyeing a bid for the 2024 or the 2028 Summer Games. We are committed to bringing back Olympic Games to Germany but the whens and wheres are undefined. Berlin and Hamburg have signaled strong interest in hosting the Games. That is why we have started a process to find out more about the circumstances in both cities. At the end of the day we have to decide on the year and on the city. One thing though is for sure: A bid for the Olympic Games needs strong public support. Recently nationwide polls showed 76 percent of the people were in favor of a bid. This gives us great confidence. But 2024 would be a challenge because of the short time left to get all the preparations done. Let’s wait and see. This fall we will know more. The cities have got time until August 31 to answer our questionnaire that will be the basis for the next steps and decisions.
On what changes the IOC needs to make ...
Hörmann: We are convinced that the agenda process of the IOC will be successful. I know [IOC President] Thomas Bach as a very focused and committed leader. He has made clear that changes are needed and the IOC Session in Sochi proved that the IOC members completely agree on that fact. I am sure the working groups will present valuable results which are going to be discussed by the members at the IOC Session in December in Monte Carlo. The DOSB and three other NOCs have passed on their ideas to the IOC in a joint paper.
On the fight against doping ...
Hörmann: The fight against doping is a never ending story. No matter what tool we develop, doping is not going to be eliminated. But we have to do everything possible to protect the clean athletes. We already have an anti-doping law in Germany but it is not called this way. We are now talking about creating a specific anti-doping law and to take some more measures that strengthen our fight against doping. I believe internationally Germany is a good example for an efficient fight against doping. But we need a harmonization of the measures that the National Anti-Doping Agencies, the World Anti-Doping Agency and the national and international federations take.
On the biggest challenges facing the DOSB ...
Hörmann: Right now we are discussing a reform of the DOSB constitution. This sounds like a dry topic and yes, it is. But it is also a very important one. We have to redraw the lines between the paid board of directors and the volunteer executive board. An organization like the DOSB with 98 member organizations, 91,000 sports clubs and 28 million members has to give itself a modern and professional structure. Eight years after the NOC of Germany and the German Sports Confederation merged to DOSB in May 2006 it is time for the next step in our development.
On balancing the interests of the DOSB's member organizations ...
Hörmann: Satisfying everyone in every single question is by far impossible. This can’t be our requirement. We are a solidary group which has to focus on sports. At the end of the day it shouldn’t matter if somebody is active in soccer, skiing or handball. What matters is to literally move people. We are successfully doing this. The number of DOSB memberships is still increasing, against the demographic trend. But of course it isn’t easy to balance all the different interests, it is a major challenge indeed.
On his love of sports ...
Hörmann: I enjoy watching and practicing sports. I have the big advantage now to be able to see more live sports than ever before in my life. And I have the big disadvantage that there is not enough time to get exercise myself. Here is the next challenge: to find the right balance for myself. As DOSB president I am the president of 62 sports federations and I am not in favor of just one, as you can imagine.
AÍTO GARCÍA RENESES will coach Spanish Basketball League (ACB) side Gran Canaria during the next two seasons. García Reneses spent the previous season coaching league rival Cajasol, which has since changed its name to Sevilla (EL PAIS, 7/16). ... Mexican second division side Atlante named EDUARDO BRAUN BURILLO its new club president (NOTIMEX, 7/16). ... The German Hockey Federation (DEB) has appointed OLIVER MAYER as its new media representative. Mayer, who works as a team leader at a Stuttgart-based financial services provider, "has built up the public relations department of DEL 2 side Bietigheim Steelers for more than 10 years." The 34-year-old will replace CARINA BITZER, "who will leave the federation at the end of July" (DEB). ... Controversial bookmaker TOM WATERHOUSE "has been appointed chief executive officer of the Australian operations of British wagering giant William Hill, giving him control of Sportingbet and Centrebet, as well as his eponymous online betting shop." The CEO "role became vacant in April" when former Sportingbet CEO MICHAEL SULLIVAN "departed the company." COO ANTHONY WALLER "left the company at the same time" (SYDNEY MORNING HERALD, 7/17).
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British cycling "has wished legendary rider" BRIAN ROBINSON a "speedy recovery after he was injured in a crash while out on his bike." The 83-year-old, who was the first Briton to win a stage on the Tour de France in '58, "has been taken to hospital less than a fortnight after he was one of the guests of honour when the famous race visited his home county of Yorkshire this month." Robinson "is being treated for a suspected broken collar bone and cuts and bruises" (LONDON TIMES, 7/17). ... MICHAEL SCHUMACHER's wife, CORINNA, "has issued a message" of thanks to F1 fans and the sport at large "for their support as the seven-time champion continues his recovery" after a skiing accident six months ago. She said that "she had been 'blown away' by the level of goodwill." She also predicted that the next "phase of her husband’s recovery -- he is now out of a coma and being treated in Lausanne, Switzerland -- would take a 'long time'" (London TELEGRAPH, 7/17). ... Oxford City Basketball, a division of Oxford City Football Club Inc., announced that it has signed former NBA player 7-foot-4-inch 325 pound center PRIEST LAUDERDALE (Oxford City Basketball).
BRAZIL BEGINS OVERHAUL: The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) said on Thursday that former World Cup winning goalkeeper GILMAR RINALDI "has been appointed Brazil's new technical director." His appointment comes three days after coach LUIZ FELIPE SCOLARI and his backroom staff "resigned." Rinaldi served as technical director at Flamengo and was also a player agent. He has "informed his final clients he will no longer represent them." Brazil hopes to appoint a new coach to replace Scolari by next Tuesday but Rinaldi said there "was no chance of them hiring a foreign coach for the first time." He said, "I think this is the time to look inside our own house, for someone who knows our problems and qualities -- and there are many" (REUTERS, 7/17).
ALL IN FOR LANCE: Disgraced former U.S. cyclist LANCE ARMSTRONG "should be handed back his seven Tour de France titles, according to 12 of the 25 surviving winners of cycling's biggest race." Dutch newspaper De Telegraaf "published the results of a survey it conducted with the surviving winners of the race." Only FERDI KUBLER and ROGER WALKOWIAK "failed to respond, and of the remaining 23 more than half were of the opinion that the disgraced American should be rewritten into the history books." Irishman STEPHEN ROCHE, who won the Tour in '87, said, "Armstrong should stay on that list. .. Doping has been part of sport, not only for cycling, for decades. Who tells me JACQUES ANQUETIL won clean. Should we take his victories away?" (London TELEGRAPH, 7/17)
IN BARCELONA: Barcelona's LIONEL MESSI "has become the biggest contributor in Spain after paying tax authorities €53M over the past year." He "is likely to be forced to pay an additional" €3M ($4M) for "not declaring image rights for three years." The sum includes taxes on salary and image rights from '13, plus complementary declarations from '10, '11 and '12. Messi has reportedly paid more than €100M to the Spanish tax authorities over the past seven years (EFE, 7/17). ... Spanish judge PABLO RUZ has asked NEYMAR for "documentation of payments that Barcelona made related to variable fees and reimbursement for expenses linked to Neymar and his family's move to Spain." Ruz also asked Neymar "to reveal the exact date when the club has to pay him" €900,000 ($1.2M) for image rights from the '13-14 season. The judge "has given Neymar 10 days to provide the documents" (EFE, 7/17).
Reuters' ALAN BALDWIN: "Seb Vettel asked by German reporter where he watched World Cup final: 'I watched it on TV. Thank God they showed it.'"
Bloomberg's BEN PRIECHENFRIED: "England ranks below Greece, Bosnia Hercegovina, Switzerland and USA in new #FIFA rankings"
The AP's ROB HARRIS: "Van Gaal highlighting the emphasis on raising cash at Man United a few times: "This club is guided in a commercial way""
Bild's NICOLA POHL: "What is Adrian Sutils manager Manfred Zimmermann just discussing in the @CaterhamF1 hospitality????"
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