MONACO – Hello, Worlds!
Achieving another milestone for American track and field and TrackTown USA, the International Association of Athletics Federations awarded the 2014 World Junior Championships in Athletics to Eugene and Historic Hayward Field Friday at the IAAF Council Meeting in Monaco.
The proposed dates are July 22-27, 2014. Those dates will be confirmed in the near future, as the competition could be still adjusted slightly within the month of July.
“We are incredibly thrilled and humbled by the IAAF’s confidence to award the 2014 World Junior Championships to TrackTown USA,” said University of Oregon Associate Athletic Director Vin Lananna, who is also the Chairman of the Bidding Committee. “Bringing this prestigious event to the U.S. and Historic Hayward Field is a tremendous honor for our community and the State of Oregon.
“Our successful bid was the culmination of the combined efforts of the University of Oregon, the State of Oregon, the cities of Eugene and Springfield, USATF, the United States Olympic Committee, Oregon Track Club and the citizens of TrackTown USA,” said Lananna. “The ongoing collaboration between these organizations will produce an unforgettable 2014 IAAF World Junior Championships and will continue to raise the profile of track and field in the United States.”
The Bidding Committee, which was comprised of a delegation of local organizers and USATF, as well as 2011 world champion high jumper Jesse Williams, presented its bid on Friday at the IAAF Council meeting in Monaco. The Council unanimously awarded the Championships to USATF and Eugene early Friday afternoon.
“We are thrilled to bring an international event to the U.S., and we couldn’t be more excited about working with our partners at the Eugene organizing committee as they evolve from a player on the national to the international stage of athletics,” said interim CEO of USA Track & Field Mike McNees.
This will be the first time the IAAF World Junior Championships has been contested in the United States. The 2012 World Junior meet will be held in Barcelona, Spain. It will also be the first IAAF competition of any sort in America in more than 20 years. The last IAAF event on American soil was the 1992 IAAF World Cross Country Championships that were held in Boston.
“There is an incredible amount of enthusiasm for bringing the World Junior Championships to the United States for the first time ever and we are confident it will be the ultimate TrackTown experience for the athletes and fans,” said Lananna.
Known as TrackTown USA, Eugene in 2012 will host its second consecutive U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Track & Field, and it is the site for many of the sport’s top meets. In addition to annually hosting the Nike Prefontaine Classic, part of the IAAF’s Diamond League series, Eugene in recent years has hosted the USA Outdoor Championships, NCAA Division I Championships and Pac-10 Championships.
In addition to the 2012 Olympic Trials, other upcoming meets include the inaugural 2012 Pac-12 Championships, as well as the
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2013 and 2014 NCAA Championships.
One of the IAAF’s most prestigious events, the World Junior Championships have provided the global coming-out party for the athletes who become the sport’s biggest stars, including Williams, the 2011 Jesse Owens Award winner, and Allyson Felix, Sanya Richards and Usain Bolt.
“We are proud to have this opportunity to bring the track and field world back to our shores and are grateful to our IAAF family members for awarding World Juniors to us,” said USATF President Stephanie Hightower. “As the country with the World’s No. 1 Track & Field team, we take our role in the international community very seriously, and we want to host events that serve and help athletes from around the world. With our partners in Eugene, we are thrilled to be able to do that in 2014.”
NOTE: Portions of the release courtesy USA Track & Field.