Svein Arne Hansen, the president of European Athletics and longtime organizer of the Bislett Games in Norway, has died. He was 74.
The Norwegian Athletics Association confirmed Hansen’s loss of life on Saturday, saying there had been a number of issues along with his well being after he suffered a stroke on March 15.
“Many are mourning the lack of one of many sports activities leaders who has left indelible marks for 50 years within the service of sports activities,” the federation mentioned.
Hansen spent 24 years as director of the Bislett meet within the Norwegian capital, Oslo – usually a venue for distance-running world information – and 12 as president of Norway’s monitor and area federation. He was elected president of the game’s European governing physique in 2015 and bought reelected final yr.
At European Athletics, he was an ally of World Athletics president Sebastian Coe and a critic of the doping scandals which have tarnished the game. He helped to introduce the “I Run Clean” anti-doping training program to European Athletics and made private contact with athletics officers to make sure that leaders, coaches and practitioners adopted the upgraded pointers.
Dobromir Karamarinov, interim president of European Athletics, described Hansen as “an awesome chief, a visionary for our sport and a charismatic persona inside the athletics household.”
“He was a lot cherished by all those that knew him nicely and above all he was a pal of the athletes,” Karamarinov mentioned. “We have misplaced an awesome man.”
Outside of the game, he was a vendor in uncommon postage stamps.
“Svein Arne was a colourful and charismatic one that all the time appeared for brand spanking new challenges,” mentioned Kjetil Hildeskor, the Norwegian federation’s basic secretary. “At his age, when most individuals have retired, he nonetheless had nice dedication and lots of plans for the event of athletics.”