From sprints to event director

Dafne Schippers has been announced as the event director of the European Athletics Indoor Championships. The meet will take place at Omnisport in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands.

Schippers announced her retirement from the sport in September 2023. She is a two-time world champion. Six months hence, on the eve of International Women’s Day, she was announced as meet director. The Championships will take place in one year. “I have given myself a year to find out what I want to do now and where I will get new energy from. I think it’s great to stay involved in this world, athletics is in my heart,” she said.

“This task is a great honour. Half an hour’s drive from home, such a big European Championships in my own country. I’m looking forward to it. As a child, I had to be dragged inside when I played outside, so I think it is very important for children to be more active and hopefully, I can contribute to that,” the former athletics icon added. 

The meet will take place March 6 to 9, 2025 at the Omnisport Apeldoorn.

The athlete

Schippers currently holds five national or European records and one European best-known time. Her best performance may have been in the 200 metres where she clocked a 21.63 during the 2015 Beijing World Athletics Championships, where she won the gold. She also earned a silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games clocking a 21.88 performance. In Rio, she also earned a silver medal in the 100m sprinting a best of 10.81.

She is the sixth-fastest 200m runner of all time. The Utrecht, Netherlands native started her international career in the heptathlon. In 2012, she competed in the Hypo-Meeting in Götzis, Austria, where she finished fifth. But it was her sprinting that stood out amongst all the events. In 2015, she made the formal switch to focus only on sprinting.

Honours

Schippers was a commentator for the 2024 Glasgow World Athletics Championships.

She was the Dutch Women’s Athlete of the Year in 2011–2017. Also, Schippers was the European Women’s Athlete of the Month in July 2014, May 2015, August 2015, February 2016, and May 2016. She was the European Women’s Athlete of the Year in 2014 and 2015 and Dutch Sportswoman of the Year in 2015 and 2017.

Schippers received the Membership of Merit of the Royal Dutch Athletics Federation in 2016.

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