The International Olympic Committee is looking for a way into the future for the summer and winter games.Frankfurt / Main (dpa) - inspiration and impossible games, quadripartite instead of decathlon and heptathlon, small sports festivals such as the #backontrack meeting in Dortmund: the athletes rattle itself in the corona crisis.
However, the right kick is missing, the sport is currently largely under public radar, the audience is missing, and there are not too many competition options. «I think we are all facing a challenge. The year is different for everyone on earth. You have to make the best of it, »says European obstacle champion Gesa Krause from Trier.
"There are several events every week where athletes can test at a good level under competition conditions," judged the specialist magazine "Athletics" recently and praised: "Who would have thought a few weeks ago that athletics would find its rhythm so quickly and confidently? »
Over 500 athletes started in Regensburg at the running night and the gala. "We were able to prove that athletics is a contactless sport - no jostling, no falls," said organizer Kurt Ring of the "Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung". «I don't know a single Corona case in athletics. Everyone behaves responsibly the way we raise our youngsters. »
And yet a lot is different: Sprinters ran against each other in three different locations in the technically extremely complex Inspiration Games with 300 visitors in Zurich with simultaneous competitions in six other cities. The cameras captured each one, but the TV viewer could not tell exactly who was really in front. To make matters worse, Noah Lyles involuntarily caused a laugh: The American beat Usain Bolt's fabulous world record over 200 meters - later it turned out that he had only run 185 meters.
Oslo organized the «Impossible Games» with a similar concept - also just a copy of the Diamond League. The premium series is now scheduled to start in Monaco on August 14 with a few editions. All-around fighters such as the German World Cup medalists Carolin Schäfer and Kai Kazmirek can only point to a four-way battle in Neuwied instead of a world-class competition as usual in Götzis / Austria.
The sports festivals have a stale aftertaste: no fans, reduced starter fields, no international stars in Germany, no aces like decathlon world champion Niklas Kaul (elbow operation) or discus Olympic champion Christoph Harting (season waiver). The “Athlete of the Year” and long jump world champion Malaika Mihambo and run ace Konstanze Klosterhalfen have also not competed on German soil so far.
That could change at the German championships on 8/9. Change August in Braunschweig: Mihambo has announced its participation there. In addition, after some back and forth, the German Athletics Association (DLV) now has permission to run medium and long-distance runs. For DLV head coach Annett Stein, Braunschweig is like a "lighthouse" - in the midst of an opaque perspective.
At the beginning of the year nobody knew that these title fights would be the culmination of a "late season" ("late season"), which organizes the core Olympic sport in need. No Olympic Games in Tokyo, no European Championships in Paris. Many athletes use the unexpected forced break for regeneration, to cure minor injuries or to gather strength for 2021. "I have more time to work on my weaknesses," says European high jump champion Mateusz Przybylko from Leverkusen.
«It is very difficult to motivate yourself without competitions. I need a goal and a certain amount of pressure to keep up with the daily routine, »explains marathon ace Amanal Petros from TV Wattenscheid, who was already well on his way to Tokyo. "I just don't have the competition practice," complains Raphael Holzdeppe, the pole vault world champion of 2013, after three failed attempts at his entry height, most recently when he appeared in Zweibrücken.
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DLV announcement on the German championships