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PRESS RELEASE: Paid content from PR Newswire
Press release content from PR Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

2019 USA Track & Field World Champions Welcomed Home with Kickoff for World Athletics Championships in Oregon in 2021

October 11, 2019 GMT
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World Athletics Championships Oregon 21
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World Athletics Championships Oregon 21

EUGENE, Ore., Oct. 10, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Oregon21, LLC, USA Track & Field (USATF), Travel Oregon and the University of Oregon teamed up to host the official kickoff event for the World Athletics Championships Oregon 21 today at the University of Oregon campus. The event welcomed back Team USATF athletes just returning from this year’s World Championships in Doha, Qatar, which concluded on Sunday, Oct. 6, with Team USATF athletes and teams winning an astounding 14 gold medals, and 29 medals overall. The Team USATF gold medal tally matched the highest ever for an American team.

The 18th edition of the World Athletics Championships will come to the United States for the first time Aug. 6-15, 2021. It will be the largest sporting event in the world in 2021. University of Oregon’s Hayward Field will host nearly 2,000 competitors from more than 200 countries.

“We could not be prouder to bring the World Championships to the United States for the first time ever, and it is only fitting that TrackTown USA serve as the host,” said Governor Kate Brown. “Oregon is a running mecca, and we are excited to bring the globe’s elite athletes to our beautiful state. The event speaks to the Oregonian spirit — we are strong, nimble, and quick, just like these stellar athletes with us today, and we can’t wait to cheer them on when they compete here in Oregon in 2021.”

Athletes in attendance included:

Past World Champion athletes also in attendance included:

In addition to Governor Brown, other regional, national, and international figures in sports, government and tourism answered questions about how they are preparing for this massive, unmissable event.

“On behalf of the USATF athletes, thank you for the warm welcome back to the U.S. I am fresh from Doha and let me tell you — it was electric. And there is even more electricity — and more medals — to come,” said Renee Chube Washington, Chief Operating Officer of USATF and Board Member of Oregon21, LLC. “For the first time ever, the World Athletics Championships are being held in the United States. Oregon will be an incredible host to both our American athletes competing on their home turf as well as competitors and fans traveling here from around the world.”

The World Athletics Championships Oregon 21 will be held at the new Hayward Field at the University of Oregon. The world-class venue will offer nearly 25,000 fans a theater designed specifically for track and field, unobstructed sight lines throughout and great acoustics. The first row of seats will sit on track level, mere feet from the outside lane.

“We are thrilled to welcome the world to Hayward Field at the University of Oregon,” said University of Oregon President Michael Schill. “The World Athletics Championships Oregon 21 presents an unprecedented opportunity to showcase the state’s flagship public university and our unwavering pursuit of innovation and excellence.”

Eugene Mayor Lucy Vinis echoed Schill’s welcome and said, “The city of Eugene is the birthplace of modern American running. We look forward to welcoming the world to Eugene.”

There is a desire to host World Athletics Championships events in 2021 outside of Eugene, with the potential for the women’s and men’s Marathons to be held in Portland. An International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) team will visit the proposed course in January and make a recommendation to the IAAF Council in March 2020.

“It would be fantastic to welcome the world’s best marathoners to our community and watch the world-class event unfold and wind through our beautiful city,” said Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler in a statement. “My staff and I are working extensively with City of Portland staff, Oregon21, LLC and Sport Oregon officials to put forward Portland as the host of the World Athletics Championships Marathons, and we look forward to sharing our ideas and proposed plans with the IAAF in January next year.”

The hosting of the World Athletics Championships will impact the entire state.

“Travel Oregon recognizes the unparalleled opportunity to showcase Oregon on the world stage by supporting Oregon21, LLC’s marketing efforts and elevating awareness of the state through this world-class competition,” said Todd Davidson, Travel Oregon CEO. “We’re also working to ensure the positive economic impact of this event is felt in every corner of Oregon by connecting communities to the IAAF so they can capitalize on supplying training facilities, lodging and amenities for athletes.”

Tickets will be available for purchase after the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo. Eager ticket buyers can sign up at www.worldathleticschamps.com/oregon21 to be the first to receive email updates on schedules, events and early access to ticketing. Follow the hashtag #WorldAthleticsChamps on social media.

Visit the press room at https://worldathleticschamps.com/oregon21/media which includes links to hi-res photos and b-roll from this event. Watch the complete event at www.worldathleticschamps.com/oregon21.

About Oregon21, LLC
Oregon21, LLC is the local organizing committee managing the 18th edition of the World Athletics Championships in partnership with USA Track & Field (USATF). Taking place in Oregon from August 6 to 15, 2021, the World Athletics Championships will be the largest sporting event in the world in 2021. This is the first time the competition will take place in the United States. Hayward Field at the University of Oregon will host nearly 2,000 participants with more than 200 countries participating. For more information, visit www.worldathleticschamps.com/oregon21.

USA Track & Field is the National Governing Body (NGB) for track & field, long-distance running and race walking. This NGB provides leadership, vision, development and opportunities for participation for individuals in the United States, from the grassroots level to the master’s level. Its efforts to efficiently provide services to a national constituency are greatly dependent upon volunteers and a national office staff located in Indianapolis, Indiana. For more information, visit www.usatf.com.

About Travel Oregon  
The Oregon Tourism Commission, dba Travel Oregon, works to enhance visitors’ experiences by providing information, resources, and trip-planning tools that inspire travel and consistently convey the exceptional quality of Oregon. The commission aims to improve Oregonians’ quality of life by strengthening  the  economic impacts of the state’s $12.3  billion tourism industry  that  employs more than 115,000 Oregonians. Visit  industry.traveloregon.com to learn more. 

About University of Oregon
The University of Oregon is renowned for its research prowess and commitment to teaching. It is ranked tops among public universities in Oregon and maintains its standing as a tier 1 national research university. Twenty-five percent of undergraduates study abroad. UO faculty includes a Nobel Prize winner, a MacArthur Fellow, two National Medal of Science recipients and three Pulitzer Prize winners. Steeped in track and field excellence, the UO is reconstructing Hayward Field, home to the World Athletics Championships in 2021. When work at Hayward Field is complete in 2020, the legendary venue will be a world-class facility for athletes and spectators alike.

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SOURCE Oregon21, LLC