04 MAR 2013 General News Doha, Qatar

Blake first big name signing for Doha 2013 - IAAF Diamond League

Yohan Blake en route to a 9.69 PB in Lausanne (Gladys Chai van der Laage)Yohan Blake en route to a 9.69 PB in Lausanne (Gladys Chai van der Laage) © Copyright

Jamaica’s Yohan Blake, the World 100m champion, will open his 2013 IAAF Diamond League campaign at the Doha 2013 meeting on Friday 10 May.

The 14-fixture Samsung Diamond League, the world’s premier global circuit of invitational athletics meetings, will get underway in Doha, Qatar, as it has done in each of its previous three seasons since its creation in 2010.

Blake, who was the 2012 Olympic silver medallist at both 100m and 200m and a member of Jamaica’s World record-breaking 4x100m Olympic winning quartet in London, is the first headline announcement by the organisers of Doha 2013.

IAAF Vice President and Qatar Association of Athletics Federation Chairman, Dahlan Jumaan Al Hamad, expressed his excitement over Blake’s upcoming appearance:

“We are really looking forward to welcoming Yohan in Doha and to see the reigning 100m World champion competing at the Hamad Bin Suhaim Stadium.

“The fourth Samsung Diamond League season will commence once again in Doha and we are aiming to welcome a world-class field. The conditions here are excellent and we are aware that athletes love to compete in Qatar,” stated Al Hamad, who also serves as the Chairman of the Doha 2013 Organising Committee.

23-year-old Blake, who is tied on the all-time lists with Tyson Gay as the second fastest ever 100m runner (9.69), commented that “this will be my first time in Qatar and I am looking forward to going to Doha, for my first Diamond League appearance on the Asian continent.”

“I have heard about the fast track in Doha and I hope to break the meeting record (9.85 sec, Olusoji Fasuba, 2006). I always want to surprise the audience, everywhere I go.”

“I am the second fastest man in the world at the moment. My ambition is to become the best. I have to continue working very hard for that. Anything is possible,” says the Jamaican sprinter whose nickname is “The Beast”.

Organisers for the IAAF

2013 IAAF Diamond League Calendar
Doha, QAT – 10 May
Shanghai, CHN – 18 May
New York, USA – 25 May
Eugene, USA – 1 Jun
Rome, ITA – 6 Jun
Oslo, NOR – 13 Jun
Birmingham, GBR – 30 Jun
Lausanne, SUI – 4 Jul
Paris, FRA – 6 Jul
Monaco, MON – 19 Jul
London, GBR – 26-27 Jul
Stockholm, SWE – 22 Aug
Zürich, SUI – 29 Aug
Brussels, BEL – 6 Sep