Svein Arne Hansen on Europe vs USA

Athletics Weekly - - News -

SVEIN ARNE HANSEN is pre­dict­ing “a match for the his­tory books” when the newly-an­nounced Europe v USA meet­ing takes place next Septem­ber at the re­de­vel­oped Di­namo Sta­dium in Minsk, writes

Euan Crum­ley.

The Euro­pean Ath­let­ics pres­i­dent is con­fi­dent the prize money on of­fer will at­tract the big names to an event which will be staged on Septem­ber 9-10, just over two weeks ahead of the IAAF World Cham­pi­onships in Doha.

The of­fi­cial an­nounce­ment came just a few days ago but ea­gle-eyed read­ers of AW’s Dip

Fin­ish will re­mem­ber we ran an ex­clu­sive story about the new event in our Oc­to­ber 4 is­sue.

Fur­ther de­tails have emerged now and ev­ery track dis­ci­pline up to 3000m for men and women, ex­clud­ing the 4x400m, will be in­cluded in the Ry­der Cup-style show­piece – as will all throws, jumps and the 4x100m.

There will be also be a mixed med­ley re­lay, con­sist­ing of 200m-200m-400m-800m, with one woman and one man run­ning 200m in the or­der de­fined by each team, then a woman at 400m and a man at 800m. The in­clu­sion of this event is due to the ap­pear­ance of a mixed 4x400m re­lay on the Olympic sched­ule for 2020.

Four ath­letes from each con­ti­nent will com­pete for prize money in ev­ery event. Sev­enth and eighth place in each in­di­vid­ual event will re­ceive €500, with the pot in­creas­ing by po­si­tion up to €7000 for each win­ner.

Win­ning re­lay teams will col­lect €6000 to share be­tween the ath­letes, while sec­ond and third placed teams re­ceive €4000 and €2000 re­spec­tively.

The in­ten­tion is for the stag­ing of the match to al­ter­nate be­tween Europe and Amer­ica in fu­ture years, while the Euro­pean Team Cham­pi­onships in Au­gust will be used to pick a Europe team which will in­clude at least 10 ath­letes from the host na­tion Be­larus.

Hansen has been the driv­ing force be­hind this event and, with few ma­jor out­door ath­let­ics show­pieces on the con­ti­nent in 2019, set about adding what he hopes will be a pop­u­lar fix­ture to the cal­en­dar.

“We found out that, al­most 50 years ago, in 1969 it was the last match be­tween USA and Europe in Minsk,” he said. “So I pre­sented the idea to the Be­larus fed­er­a­tion and they were ea­ger at once.

“I think it will be a match for the his­tory books. The (200m) world cham­pion Ramil Guliyev will come, I have talked to the Nor­we­gians and they will come, as well as peo­ple like

Dina Asher-Smith. The USA are happy, too.”

He added: “It looks like peo­ple want matches be­tween na­tions. They want to see their flag.”

The Di­namo Sta­dium in Minsk will host the Europe v USA match

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