30 DEC 2009 General News Birmingham, UK

Jeter confirms Birmingham date, Olsson returns to take on Idowu

Carmelita Jeter strides clear in the women's 100m to clock 10.64 at the 2009 World Athletics Final (Getty Images)Carmelita Jeter strides clear in the women's 100m to clock 10.64 at the 2009 World Athletics Final (Getty Images) © Copyright
Carmelita Jeter, the second fastest 100m sprinter in history, will race at the Aviva Grand Prix on 20 February, the ninth IAAF Indoor permit meeting of the 2010 season.

Jeter won bronze at the World Championships last year and she is hoping to retain her 60m title at the Aviva Grand Prix which she claimed last season in a personal best of 7.11.

“I can’t wait to return to the National Indoor Arena for the Aviva Grand Prix,” said Jeter, whose post-World championships campaign saw the 30-year-old American move all the way up to the No. 2 position all-time in the 100m. Following up her Berlin bronze with 100m victories in Zurich and Brussels,  Jeter first improved to 10.67 at the World Athletics Final in Thessaloniki, and again to 10.64 in Shanghai a week later to trail only World record holder Florence Griffith-Joyner.

“I had a great time there last year, winning the 60m in a new personal best for me,” Jeter said. “There was a very strong field of names in the line-up last year and I’ve no doubt that this season’s Aviva Grand Prix will be the same, which means it will be tough to retain my title, but it’s a challenge I relish and am up for.”

“One of the best things about returning to Birmingham is that it gives me an opportunity to familiarise myself with the city in the build-up to London 2012.” Birmingham will be the holding camp for the USA track squad for the Olympics that year.

Olsson returning to action

Infield action will feature a sizzling head-to-head in the men’s Triple Jump between former Olympic and World champion, Christian Olsson of Sweden, and Phillips Idowu of Great Britain, the reigning World champion.

Olsson, 29, will return to competition this season after intermittent injuries sidelined him for most of the past two years.  Olsson hasn’t competed at a major event since he took gold at the European Championships in his hometown of Gothenburg in 2006. In 2003 the Swede was crowned World indoor champion at the National Indoor Arena.

“It has been a tough couple of years for me due to a number of injuries but I am hoping that for the first time, in a long time, I will start the year fit and ready to compete,” Olsson said.

“Not being able to compete, or even train, has been understandably hard but I still have a lot to give to the sport and I’m excited to be back.

“It seems like a long time ago that I was in Birmingham but I still remember winning gold at the World Indoor Championships in 2003 at the National Indoor Arena.  Staying healthy is my priority, but if I can then who knows what I might be able to achieve. 

“A number of guys have been jumping well, Phillips (Idowu) is one of them,” Olsson continued. “Of course I am looking forward to coming back and renewing that rivalry with him; he’s not the World Indoor and Outdoor champion for nothing and you always want to beat the best.”

Organisers have also announced that Briton Jenny Meadows, the bronze medallist in the 800m at the World championships last August, will contest her specialty in her run-up to the World Indoor Championships in Doha.

Organisers for the IAAF