Gold medalist Estanguet, Coventry to become IOC members
LONDON (Reuters) - Frenchman Tony Estanguet, who won a third Olympic canoeing gold medal at the London Games and Zimbabwe swimmer Kirsty Coventry will become International Olympic Committee members after being elected onto the athletes' commission on Saturday.
The two were joined by James Tomkins, former Australian Olympic rowing champion, and Slovakian shooter Danka Bartekova as the four new members of the commission elected by their peers that also secures them a spot in the IOC for the next eight years.
The commission is designed to be the athletes' link in the decision-making process of the Olympic body.
"The athletes are at the centre of everything we do, and the commission ensures that their voice is heard in all important decisions taken by the IOC," commission chairwoman Anita DeFrantz told reporters.
Some 6,924 athletes - 64 percent of all eligible voters - chose from among 21 candidates from the same number of countries.
The commission is composed of 12 athletes (eight summer and four winter) elected for eight years by the athletes participating in the Olympic Games, and of up to seven athletes appointed by the IOC president, to ensure a balance between regions, genders and sports.
(Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Alison Williams)
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