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Michael Payne´s Book "olympic Turnaround"


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Since no one has opened a topic mentioning it, I am doing now.

I am almost finishing to read the book and I wanted to know if someone read it and what do you think about his thoughts.

For me, I felt the book was too much optmistic (well, he was the marketing guy, so he has to be) and some parts of the book are too much naive for me (it almost made me "cry" with some apassionate defenses of Samaranch and the Olympics :P), skipping topics, like doping, entirely. But he is good at describing some of the problems the Olympic movement had at the past 20 years, and had some bits of humor (sometimes unintentionaly).

Overall, a good read, but not exactly the best book I´ve read about the Olympics. Jennings´ book was more convincing.

Any other thoughts?

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I read the book last year, I received a Payne hand-signed copy from London 2012 (lucky me!). It wasn't a bad read, but it certainly contrasted with Richard Pound's book, Inside the Olympics published a year earlier.

In Pound's book, it seemed like everything that happened in the Olympics during Samaranch's reign was all about Dick Pound. Then, when you read Payne's book - it seemed Michael Payne had more of an influence, of course.

So, both accounts of the history were a little different and I think you need to read both in order to get the full impact of each.

Back back to Payne's book... it was very interesting. Some of the stories about the marketing programmes and especially the TOP sponsors were fascinating. You have to wonder how much was embellished, but you can filter that out for yourself. It was worth the read.

In both books there is a lot to learn about Samaranch.

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Wait till Gianna publishes her book!

Why exactly are you saying this? Reading Payne´s book seems to me she was very in line with IOC.

Obviously he might be too much optmistic, like in the rest of the book, when saying that. But I apparently believe him in that case.

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IBack back to Payne's book... it was very interesting. Some of the stories about the marketing programmes and especially the TOP sponsors were fascinating. You have to wonder how much was embellished, but you can filter that out for yourself. It was worth the read.

I think those stories were the best the book had to offer, I really enjoyed Atlanta´s stories and the Cobi description. What I really didn´t like was that "If it wasn´t because of me..." or "The Games were under serious danger..." attitude, usually at the beginning and the end of the chapters. Ok, he was important, and the Olympics were a little down at the end of the 1970s, but it wasn´t every time that 'thin as a hair' situation happened.

There is much to filter in the book, since he really does a passionate defense of the Games, so passionate that he miss some "ugly topics" like treating the Salt Lake scandal like a minor problem.

And not a single line mentioning doping...

As a final note, I saw some teasing at the first page of the book. It was very, very similar with the first page of "Lords of the Rings" book, but putting Beijing instead of Barcelona. It seemed Mr. Jennings is not a welcome guy at Lausanne.

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I haven't read Payne's book, but of course it's very much going to follow the IOC line in all things. Jennings, on the otherhand, I tend to think goes overboard in his hatred of the IOC and his witch hunt for anything that might whiff of impropriety in the organisation. Both have an agenda, and probably the closest to the truth would be somewhere in between the two.

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I haven't read Payne's book, but of course it's very much going to follow the IOC line in all things. Jennings, on the otherhand, I tend to think goes overboard in his hatred of the IOC and his witch hunt for anything that might whiff of impropriety in the organisation. Both have an agenda, and probably the closest to the truth would be somewhere in between the two.

i would tend to agree with you

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