LONDON – The British Olympic Association suspended its legal action against London 2012 organizers and is ready for fresh talks to resolve a messy financial dispute that is marring preparations for the games.
The appeal at the Court of Arbitration for Sport was put on hold late Monday after the cash-strapped BOA decided to seek a more amicable resolution to the row with the London organizing committee, known as LOCOG, over its share of revenue from the Olympics.
"We have taken the decision to suspend the case before CAS, and have notified CAS of that," BOA communications director Darryl Seibel said Wednesday. "We have requested a meeting with LOCOG and they have agreed, and the purpose is to continue working together toward a resolution.
"It has been our desire all along to resolve this outside the legal process and we are pleased to have this opportunity with LOCOG."
The BOA has been pushing for a greater share of any surplus from the 2012 Games. The body is entitled to a 20 percent cut under a joint marketing agreement signed in 2005, but claims that the potentially money-losing Paralympics should not be taken into account.
The International Olympic Committee and LOCOG insist that the cost of both games should be counted, as they have been in the past.
The BOA took its case to CAS in Lausanne, Switzerland when it rejected the IOC's ruling, but a resolution was not set to come until September.
Britain's Olympics minister Hugh Robertson described the dispute on Tuesday as "an embarrassment."
The bitter feud led to London 2012 organizers excluding BOA chairman Colin Moynihan and chief executive Andy Hunt from attending board meetings while "they are individually and actively involved in pursuing a dispute against LOCOG."
The BOA has said it faces a budget shortfall of up to $16 million that will threaten funding of the British team for the games.