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Cross Country to make its debut at Buenos Aires 2018

2018-02-08 15:40:28

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This new athletics category, which includes a race on natural terrain for athletes competing in the 1500m, 3000m, and 2000m with hurdles, has joined the sport programme at the Youth Olympic Games.

To determine who receives an Olympic medal in the 1500m, 3000m and 2000m steeplechase, the final individual score of each event will be calculated in combination with the athlete’s final result for the cross country race.

Athletics is one of the oldest sports in the history of the modern Olympic Games. Since its first edition in 1896, the discipline has been present at every Olympic celebration.

It was also present at Singapore 2010 and Nanjing 2014, the first two editions of the Summer Youth Olympic Games.

From October 6 – 18, 680 athletics athletes will compete at Buenos Aires 2018, with an equal number of men and women. There will be 38 events that will encompass competitions on the track, field, as well as the new addition: cross country.

Just like the first Youth Olympic Games in 2010, athletics at Buenos Aires 2018 will consist in two stages for each individual discipline.

The category of cross country - a race contested on natural terrain where the young athletes will run 4000m on a route that is 1000m in length - will be combined with three different track competitions: 1500m, 3000m, and 2000 steeplechase.

To determine who receives an Olympic medal in the 1500m, 3000m and 2000m steeplechase, the final individual score of each event will be calculated in combination with the athlete’s final result for the cross country race.

“I’m delighted at the innovative way that track and cross country have been combined for the next edition of the Youth Olympic Games”, said Sebastian Coe, president of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF).

Cross country appeared three times in the history of the Olympic Games. It was present at Stockholm 1912, at Antwerp 1920 and Paris 1924. The inaugural World Cross Country Championships, organised by the International Federations, took place on March 17, 1973, in the Belgian city of Waregem.

The IAAF will base qualifications for Buenos Aires 2018 on the last two U18 World Championships and the world rankings for each discipline in accordance with the quota presented by each National Olympic Committee to the International Federation.

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