Sydney has today been announced as the 2021 host venue for Athletics Australia’s Australian Track and Field Championships, taking place from April 12-21.
The Australian Track and Field Championships is the largest annual athletics event in Australia and the Oceania region, traditionally attracting more than 3,500 athletes from across Australia and the Pacific.
With the 2020 Championships in Sydney being cancelled due to COVID-19, the home of the 2000 Games will now host the 2021 Championships in a COVID-safe event, which will act as a major hit out for athletes leading into the rescheduled Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Athletics Australia CEO Darren Gocher said despite the challenges presented by COVID-19, he is looking forward to the Australian athletics community reuniting as the nation’s best compete together once again.
“We know how difficult the last year has been for our track and field athletes in not being able to compete, which makes announcing the venue for the Australian Track and Field Championships all the more exciting,” Gocher said.
“We recognise that competition in Australia is still disrupted, but we are doing everything we possibly can to give athletes the opportunity to compete safely for national titles and of course, to qualify for the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“The Australian Track and Field Championships is the highlight of our domestic season, and the culmination of another year of hard work and dedication from our athletes, so I want to thank the NSW Government for their collaboration and ongoing support in making this happen. Together, we will make this the best possible event that we can for the Australian athletics community.”
The Australian Track and Field Championships determine Australia’s best athletes in more than 1,000 events. The 2021 Championships will take place at Sydney Olympic Park Athletics Centre from April 12-21 and subject to no disruptions from COVID-19, will be the last chance for automatic qualifiers for the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.
NSW Acting Minister for Sport, the Hon. Geoff Lee MP welcomed the 2021 Championships back to Sydney ahead of this year’s Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics.
“We want to give our NSW athletes the best possible chance to succeed and competing at this world-class facility gives them a great home advantage,” Mr Lee said.
“Having our future champions competing on the same stage as our Olympic and Paralympic legends will also ensure we promote a great legacy for athletics.
“We are super excited about welcoming the superstars of track and field to Sydney in 2021 for a COVID-safe event.”
NSW Minister for Tourism, the Hon. Stuart Ayres MP said the Australian Track and Field Championships would deliver a valuable boost to the visitor economy.
“Events like these Championships are the engine room of the NSW visitor economy with thousands of competitors participating in the program supported by officials, staff, volunteers and spectators who all stay and spend locally for the duration.
“Sydney has a proud history of hosting world-class sporting events and it will be fantastic to see the Australian Track and Field Championships at the home of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
“We look forward to welcoming all the participants and their supporters in April and encourage them to visit Sydney.com for inspiration about all the amazing things to do in the Harbour City.”
Athletics Australia acknowledges that the 2021 Australian Track and Field Championships are subject to change based on any implemented COVID-19 restrictions and regulations.
Together with the NSW Government, Athletics Australia will be monitoring COVID-19 restrictions to ensure it is appropriate for the event to take place and will take into consideration travel restrictions from each state and territory.
Spectator numbers and safety measures for athletes, staff, coaches, officials and spectators will be dictated by NSW Health and COVID-safe best practise as per the date of the event.