Track and field athletics timetable for next year’s Olympics in French capital announced

The new year has no doubt brought a laser-eyed focus for athletes, especially that they can now map out what’s possible at the Paris Olympics.

The athletics timetable for the Games has been released and offers athletes in the sprints and longer distances – both on the track and road – to double up and maximise their chance of winning a medal.

It will be the third time that Paris has hosted the Olympics – previously 1900 and 1924 – and to mark the 100th anniversary of the last time the city held the Games, the opening ceremony will amalgamate a flotilla of boats across a 6km procession along the River Seine.

That will take place on July 26 but as usual athletics fans will have to wait a bit longer with the schedule between August 1-11.

All of the track and field events will take place during 17 sessions at the Stade de France. The finals will be held in the evening sessions, while the road events will take place in the mornings on four different days.

The athletics action kicks off with both men’s and women’s 20km race walks on August 1 while the first track final will be the men’s 10,000m on August 2.

As usual, the last track discipline will be the two 4x400m relays but it will be the women’s marathon, which takes place on August 11, that ends the action at next year’s Olympics. The marathon course will be an arduous journey for athletes as it involves 1584ft of elevation from start to finish.

The schedule means it will be possible for athletes to double up in the 100m and 200m, 800m and 1500m, 1500m and 5000m, plus 5000m and 10,000m, without having to compete in more than one discipline on any given day. Athletes can also double up in the long and triple jump or 20km and 35km walks.

There will also be a repechage round in all individual track events from 200m to 1500m in distance, including the hurdles events.

It means that athletes who do not qualify by place in the heats of the 200m to 1500m will have a second chance to qualify for the semi-finals by participating in repechage heats.

Due to the prioritisation of the World Athletics ranking system – only 50% of athletes will qualify via the entry standards – the marks needed to make the Paris Olympics are tougher than usual.

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