IAAF WORLD RANK­INGS CON­TRO­VERSY

Athletics Weekly - - News -

THE IAAF is com­ing un­der pres­sure to put its new world rank­ings on hold.

The sys­tem, which is pro­duced in con­junc­tion with All-Ath­let­ics, is set to be used as a qual­i­fi­ca­tion method for next year’s IAAF World Cham­pi­onships in Doha. But ath­letes and of­fi­cials are al­ready com­plain­ing that it favours cer­tain types of ath­letes or geo­graph­i­cal ar­eas.

In re­cent days the NACAC (North Amer­i­can, Cen­tral Amer­i­can and Caribbean Cham­pi­onships) has told the IAAF it be­lieves the rank­ings should be used on a pi­lot ba­sis only and only used as a qual­i­fi­ca­tion sys­tem af­ter the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

The cur­rent sys­tem favours elite ath­letes who are in­vited to the

Di­a­mond League events as op­posed to up-and-com­ing or US col­le­giate ath­letes.

Achiev­ing a good rank­ing will also be dif­fi­cult for ath­letes in the south­ern hemi­sphere due to most of the high rank­ings events be­ing in Europe and the United States.

Among the many quirks of the sys­tem, Di­a­mond Leagues are ranked a cou­ple of cat­e­gories above cham­pi­onships such as the Com­mon­wealth Games. This is de­spite the fact that some lo­cal ath­letes might be given lanes in the Di­a­mond League in their own coun­try, whereas ath­letes will have had to work hard sim­ply to qual­ify for a Com­mon­wealth Games.

The rank­ings are also based purely on times and po­si­tion­ing, so there is no con­sid­er­a­tion for head-to-head com­pe­ti­tion or ex­ter­nal in­flu­ences like al­ti­tude.

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