Golden League athletics will be doubled to 12 meets

November 24th, 2008 - 1:14 am ICT by IANS  

Monte Carlo, Nov 23 (DPA) The Golden League athletics series is to be doubled from six to 12 meets from 2010 onwards, a top official of the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) said Sunday.IAAF vice-president Helmut Digel of Germany said that sponsors have signalled interest despite the worldwide recession which would allow the series to move outside Europe into new markets.

Digel said that the expansion was necessary due to lower television interest in Europe in the past years.

The current Golden League hosts are Berlin, Brussels, Oslo, Paris, Rome and Zurich with athletes winning their event at all six stops eligible for a jackpot of $1 million.

London, Lausanne and Stockholm have been mentioned as possible European additions with Shanghai, a venue in Qatar, and possible in US stop in Eugene named by Digel.

“The main problem is TV. If the quality gets better it can’t overlook us,” said Digel, who said that around 30 million euros needed to be spent for the expansion.

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