His love life has never run as smoothly as his glittering career on and off the track
Now friends have been left ‘stunned’ by the news that Sebastian Coe has split from the glamorous PR woman he planned to make wife number three.
The Mail on Sunday has learned Lord Coe, 67, and Sarah Robarts, 53, have broken up just nine months after announcing their engagement.
The couple, who were friends for 12 years before embarking on a lockdown romance in 2020, are both said to be devastated by the end of their relationship.
A friend said: ‘It has come as a total shock to everyone, we’re all stunned. They were together just a few weeks ago at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest and seemed madly in love and happier than ever.
The Mail on Sunday has learned Lord Coe, 67, and Sarah Robarts, 53, have broken up just nine months after announcing their engagement
He was married to first wife Nicky McIrvine, pictured, for 12 years before they split in 2002. She is the mother of his four children, Alice, Peter, Madeleine and Harry
‘They have always seemed like the perfect couple which is why it’s such a shock that they have split. It’s a total mystery.’
The couple were planning an intimate wedding ceremony next year, and the MoS has been told the split is ‘amicable’.
Ms Robarts, a mother of two who runs one of LA’s most prestigious PR companies, Ballantines, declined to comment last night.
A source said: ‘Sarah is absolutely heartbroken but wishes Seb nothing but the best.
‘They seemed a perfect match. Sarah is beautiful on the inside and out, she runs triathlons and is very sporty. She’s also a talented artist. Seb has shown up to support her events just as she has been jetting all over the world to support him.’
As head of World Athletics, Coe was splitting his time between his homes in Monaco and London and Ms Robarts’ house in Manhattan Beach, California.
Coe won gold in the 1500m at the Olympics in 1980 and 1984, was a Tory MP for five years, and masterminded the London 2012 Games – but he is no stranger to romantic drama.
The couple, who were friends for 12 years before embarking on a lockdown romance in 2020, are both said to be devastated by the end of their relationship
He was married to first wife Nicky McIrvine for 12 years before they split in 2002. She is the mother of his four children, Alice, Peter, Madeleine and Harry.
He then married journalist Carole Annett in 2011 after an eight-year romance. Ms Annett’s first husband, Andy, branded Coe a ‘marriage wrecker’ in 2004 for allegedly romancing his wife of 15 years before they had split.
Mr Annett claimed at the time: ‘He began an affair with my wife almost a year ago.
‘I’m very angry. We have children. He ruined my marriage.’
Coe vehemently denied his claims. He and Ms Annett separated in February 2020 and he began his romance with Los Angeles-based Ms Robarts later that year.
A source said: ‘Seb and Sarah were friends for 12 years and then it developed into this wonderful romance. Everyone was thrilled they found love again at this stage in life.
‘They seemed so well-suited. When they got engaged he gave her the most amazing diamond ring. It was a rock. It’s a real shock that they have broken up. No one can understand it.’
Some within the couple’s circle say Coe has become increasingly focused on a possible run to become President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) when Thomas Bach’s term ends in 2025. A source told the MoS: ‘He is talking in private about making a run for the IOC job which would be the cherry on top of his amazing career.
‘The next year will be a pivotal one for him and it is just very sad he won’t be doing it with Sarah by his side.’