LONDON, February 4, 2012 - Hundreds of enthusiastic runners gave a special sporting welcome to Olympic legends Edwin Moses and Mark Spitz ahead of Monday’s (Feb 6) Laureus World Sports Awards, which are being held at Central Hall, Westminster.
Moses, who won Olympic gold medals in the 400 metres hurdles in 1976 and 1984, and Spitz, who famously swam to seven gold medals in one Olympiad, in Munich in 1972, were on the spot to wave off competitors in the 5km run through Bushy Park, one of London’s famous Royal Parks, just a short distance away from Hampton Court Palace.
Moses and Spitz are members of the Laureus World Sports Academy, a unique association of 47 of the greatest living sports legends, who volunteer their time to support the Laureus Sport for Good Foundation, which works to improve the lives of children around the world.
Mark Spitz said: “That was my first time at this Bushy Park event, so I guess it was another sporting first for me. It was a great way to start the Laureus Awards weekend and terrific to see so many people out running. I believe more than 150 people have completed this run more than 100 times – that’s quite an amazing thing. It is a really unique place to go for a run, so I can understand why people would want to do it more than once. It was great chatting to the runners.”
The Laureus World Sports Awards, which recognise sporting achievement during the year, are the premier honours on the international sporting calendar. The winners are chosen by the Laureus Academy Members and proceeds from the Awards directly benefit and underpin the work of the Laureus Foundation, which supports 91 community sports projects in 34 countries. Since its inception, Laureus has raised over €40 million for projects which have improved the lives of more than one-and-a-half million young people. The Bushy parkrun takes place every Saturday and is free to enter. It is one of a countless number of sports events which enthusiastic Londoners take part in during the year.