JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA TO BID FOR THE WORLD MASTERS ATHLETICS CHAMPIONSHIPS IN 2018 OR 2020 ?

JOHANNESBURG, CITY OF GOLD, (SOUTH AFRICA)   A WORLD CLASS AFRICAN CITY  to bid for the hosting of the World Masters Athletics Championships in 2018 or 2020.  The city has the infrastructure – stadiums, transport, and accommodation to host the championships which takes place over a fortnight.  



The first World Masters Athletics Championships took place in 1975, and since then have been held every 2nd year.  The number of participants are only second to the Olympic Games and have in the past ranged from 3000 – 7000 athletes coming from approx. 90 countries, representing all walks of life – from the social athlete to the highly competitive.  






These championships give athletes the opportunity to meet like-minded athletes from all over the world and rub shoulders with past Olympians.  Track and Field events for masters consist of all the usual Olympic track and field events. Women also participate in such events as steeplechase and pole vault. To accommodate advancing age, implements of lighter weights are used from certain ages and the heights of hurdles are lowered. This is one sport where the participants look forward to advancing age ! All events take place in  5 year age groups, eg. 35 – 39, 40- 45, etc for men and women.

The championships also include a 8 km cross country, a half marathon and marathon, and track and road racewalking.   


The first World Masters Athletics Championships took place in 1975, and since then have been held every 2nd year.  The number of participants are only second to the Olympic Games and have in the past ranged from 3000 – 7000, coming from approx. 90 countries, representing all walks of life – from the social athlete to the highly competitive.  These championships give athletes the opportunity to meet like-minded athletes from all over the world and rub shoulders with past Olympians.   

South African masters athletes have competed successfully since 1993, when we were re-admitted to the international arena.   We still have 4 current world record holders (3 living and 1 deceased) by names – 

Phillip Rabinowitz (deceased) (20km Roadwalk M.95 - 2:48:19 (1999) and 200m  M.100 - 77.59s (2004), 
Lucas Nel (90) 200m - 38,04 (2013)
Titus Mamabola - Marathon M.50 (2:19,29) in 1991 (grandfather of Ludwig Mamabola)
Stan Immelman 800m - M.55 - 2.03,7 (2001)

http://www.world-masters-athletics.org/records/outdoor-men

Over the years, 2 of our great female walkers, Barbara Nell and Brenda Nooy previously held world records in the roadwalk, as well as Andrej Rzpecki who previously held the weight throw world record.

Locally, South Africa has 13 provincial masters associations which each host their own championships, and the S.A. Masters Championships which are held every year in a different province, alternating between a coastal and inland venue. If you are interested in joining masters athletes, contact your provincial association.  

In 1997, Durban, South Africa hosted the first World Masters (then known as Veterans) Championships held on the continent.







In 2013 a large contingent of athletes participated in the World Masters Championships held in Porto Alegra, Brazil and brought home 80+ medals.

If Johannesburg wins the bid to host the championships, it will be the first time that it will be held at altitude (1753m).  The only criteria for participation is that you are over 35 and in good health. 
This year  Lyon, France  (altitude 173m) approx 477 km from the nearest coastal town (Marseilles), will host the worlds, followed by Perth, Australia in 2016 when the switch from odd years to even years takes place. 

http://www.lyon2015.com/en

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