Olympian Perri Shakes-Drayton and Paralympic champion Richard Whitehead today joined in the first phase of track transformation ahead of the IAAF World Championships London 2017.
The track that was used for the London 2012 Olympic Games is being replaced with a new, super-fast surface, laid in time for the two global events taking place at the former Olympic Stadium.
The first of those, the IPC World Championships, will be held in exactly 500 days’ time, from 15-23 July 2017. The IAAF World Championships will be held from 5-13 August.
Shakes-Drayton, the 2013 European indoor 400m champion, and Whitehead, who won gold in the T42 200m at the Paralympic Games, were invited to remove the final pieces of the Olympic Stadium track – including the finish line where Usain Bolt celebrated his victory in the men’s 100m final at the London Olympic Games.
The new track will be laid in late spring in time for a range of events this summer including the IAAF Diamond League meeting in July.
Momentum is building for the 2017 IAAF World Championships with a range of star athletes showing their support for the event.
“Dreams were made when athletes like Usain Bolt crossed this famous finish line at the Olympics in 2012 and I hope to be creating new memories for Britain at the London 2017 World Championships,” said Shakes-Drayton.
“I feel honoured to be a part of transforming this incredible track in time to make new memories for London 2017. It’s a symbolic and exciting day. The excitement of a major global event coming to London in 500 days’ time is what I’m really looking forward to. London 2017 will create memories which will last a lifetime.”
The local organising committee for the championships has opened a ‘priority purchase’ opportunity for members of the athletics family to buy their tickets first.
More information on ticketing for London 2017 will be announced in April including timetable, pricing and key on-sale dates. A volunteering programme will also be launched in the coming months.
Members of the general public can register now to receive more information on ticketing, volunteering and further news at: london2017athletics.com/register