World Athletics officials happy with Eugene stadium work


Los Angeles (AFP)

World Athletics officials said Friday they were excited by a visit to Eugene, Oregon, this week to study plans and new stadium construction ahead of the 2021 World Athletics Championships.

Jon Ridgeon, chief executive of World Athletics, praised plans and preparations for the first major track and field showdown after this year's Tokyo Olympics, the first outdoor worlds to be staged in the United States.

"Our tour of the Hayward Field stadium this week was exciting and, although still under construction, we can all imagine a world class event in 2021," Ridgeon said.

The meet will be staged August 6-15, 2021, with most events at the new University of Oregon venue in Eugene but some competitions to be conducted in Portland, where the 2016 World Indoors were staged.

"This is the first time ever that our world championships will be held in a stadium purpose-built specifically for athletics, rather than a multi-purpose sports stadium, which has its own challenges in terms of space but will provide a strong legacy for the sport here in the USA," Ridgeon said.

"This has been a packed few days but it's important to ensure we are all on the same page in terms of expectations."

Officials examined course options for race walks and marathons in Portland with plans to be considered at meetings in China in March.

Officials will make another site visit in June, when the US Olympic trials will be conducted at Eugene.