The British Olympic Association (BOA) has today announced Paul Ford MBE, Georgina Harland and Mike Hay OBE as the Deputy Chefs de Mission for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
Ford will act as Deputy Chef de Mission for performance services in Tokyo, which includes Team GB’s Preparation Camp and Performance Lodge, along with overall Games Operations and the Performance Services team. He is also Chef de Mission for Team GB in Minsk this summer for the second edition of the European Games and was in charge of Team GB’s Rio 2016 Olympic Preparation Camp.
Ford said: “I feel privileged to have been selected as Deputy Chef de Mission for performance services for Tokyo 2020. Our plans and preparations are well underway, and we have already hosted two multi-sport camps at our Preparation Camp locations in Tokyo.”
Olympic modern pentathlon bronze medallist Harland will oversee Team GB’s kitting out operation, the athlete journey and athlete services delivery for Team GB, as she did as Deputy Chef de Mission for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
Harland said: “Tokyo will be my sixth summer Games and I am just as proud today as I was for my first Games, then as an athlete, in Sydney 2000. I have a deep passion for the Olympic Games and for Team GB in particular and I look forward to combining my on and off the field experience to ensure we support the athletes to be the best prepared they can be for the Tokyo Games next year.”
Harland has also been appointed as Chef de Mission for the winter edition of the Youth Olympic Games (YOG) in Lausanne 2020.
“I am extremely proud to have been selected to lead Team GB in Lausanne next February. I attended the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore a decade ago as an Athlete Role Model and experienced first-hand what a fantastic development opportunity it is for young athletes,” she added.
Hay, who has been Chef de Mission to the past two Olympic Winter Games and successfully led Team GB to their most successful ever Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang last February, has been selected as Deputy Chef de Mission for sport. Hay, will lead on the sport Team Leader journey as well as operational areas such as accommodation, kit and accreditation.
Hay said: “I am honoured to be appointed as a Deputy Chef de Mission for Tokyo 2020, which will be my seventh Games with the BOA. Following the success of Team GB in Rio and PyeongChang I look forward to embracing the challenge and expectation that Tokyo brings. Our preparations for Tokyo began in 2015 and I believe that our investment in the Team Leaders will ensure that our sports are the best prepared for the unique climatic and environment challenges that Tokyo presents to enable our athletes to perform at their best.”
Team GB Chef de Mission, Mark England OBE said: “With the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games now just one calendar year away our focus is firmly on ensuring that Team GB are the best prepared National Olympic Committee at the Games. Mike, Georgie and Paul have a wealth of Olympic experience and their expertise and passion for Team GB and the Olympic Games gives me confidence that we have the pillars in place to ensure that every athlete who qualifies onto Team GB is able to achieve their best performance in Tokyo.”
The BOA has also appointed the Chefs de Mission for the two upcoming European Youth Olympic Festivals [EYOF].
Lewis Coggins will be Chef de Mission for the winter edition of the Festival taking place in Sarajevo between 9-16 February, whilst Elaine Skilton will lead the team at the summer Festival in Baku later this summer.
Coggins said: “To have the opportunity to be Chef de Mission for Team GB in Sarajevo is a huge honour. The European Youth Olympic Festivals are a fantastic opportunity for our young winter athletes to experience life in a multi-sport Games for the first time and I look forward to heading to the Festival in a few weeks’ time.”
Skilton said: “The European Youth Olympic Festival is a great development opportunity for young athletes, providing them with experience in both international competition and the environment of a multi-sport event. I am honoured to be announced as Chef de Mission and look forward to working with NGBs to ensure that every team member has the best opportunity to learn from the event and perform to their potential.”
Sarajevo 2019 is the 14th edition of the winter EYOF and will feature eight sports on the programme. Team GB are set to be represented in seven of these; alpine skiing, biathlon, cross-country skiing, figure skating, short track speed skating, snowboarding and curling.
Baku 2019 will see around 50 European nations come together to compete across ten Olympic sports from 21-27 July.