Tag Archives: IAAF Continental Cup

Continental Cup elimination 3000m a tough but rewarding experience for Chelimo and Ahmed

Elimination racing in track and field is far from new. But it was new to Mohammed Ahmed on Sunday – and it felt, well, tough.

The decision to take out successive stragglers over the final four lap markers at the IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018 was applied for the men’s and women’s 3000m and 3000m steeplechase.

The men’s steeplechase in particular provided a dramatic spectacle for the crowd in the Mestsky Stadium as Morocco’s world silver medallist Soufiane El Bakkali came to grief in the melee to avoid the first scheduled disqualification.

The men’s 3000m flat, however, offered the most compelling version of a mode of competition that has featured down the years in the sport, most often at indoor meetings.

First to depart, surprisingly, was the fastest man in the field this season, Asia-Pacific’s Birhanu Balew, after the prospect of an early exit had turned the distance race into a sprinting field across four or five lanes as the line approached.

Another of this Continental Cup’s innovations – the opportunity to play a “joker” on a men’s and women’s event each day which would double the points in the event of a team win – heightened the relevance of the next two eliminations, as they took out the two runners representing Africa who had been competing with this extra responsibility.

And as the four men left in contention set off with a measure of relief over the final lap, it was the Americas, led by the USA’s Olympic silver and world bronze medallist Paul Chelimo, and followed by Ahmed, who does his racing for Canada, that took the overall win with the first two placings.

At some considerable cost.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” Ahmed said. “I just tried to survive. I really didn’t know what was going to happen.

“I thought a couple of guys would take it from the gun, but I knew we had eight really strong guys and it was going to take everything you had to not be eliminated. The guy who has dominated all season in the Diamond League got eliminated on the first time.

“That speaks about the value of the competition. I was trying to survive and it was a hard race. It was one of the hardest races I’ve ever run.

“But it’s good to be competing over here with Chelimo, who’s a guy I’ve competed against since way back, when I was 17, 18 – ten years ago. It was good to get some good points together.

“I think the elimination idea worked out pretty well for the flat events.”

Chelimo was also challenged by the format of the race.

“At the beginning they announced that Africa played their joker in the 3k, I knew it was going to be tough,” he said. “Because if a joker is played, that brings a lot of pressure. I really had to keep digging deeper and deeper and just coming home with the win was enough today.

“It was a good experience. But every lap, kicking for 40 metres, that really takes it out of you. When you get over the line you are like, dead, but you have got to keep going. It was really tough.”

A Sports Illustrated article dated 18 January 1965, on the opening meeting of that year’s US indoor track season – held at the Cow Palace in San Francisco – was headlined ‘A year of hope and devil-take-the-hindmost’ and included the following:

“The other competitive goody was an elimination game called devil-take-the-hindmost. This was a mile run raised to its most punishing, sadistic extreme. Starting with the end of the third of eleven laps, the runner in last place after each go-round was waved off the track until two runners were left. As each lap ended, there was a frantic scramble for position, the winners (the losers?) continuing the agony for another 160 yards.

“We were trying to figure out how to keep the crowd excited,” explained Assistant Meet Director Payton Jordan, the Stanford track coach, before the meet. Jordan need figure no longer. The crowd loved the race.”

In Tallahassee, Florida there has been an annual devil-take-the-hindmost race for more than 30 years, in which, instead of officials politely waving red paddles at eliminated runners, there is someone dressed as the devil in red, with horns and a pitchfork, forcing them out of contention.

There are no plans at present, however, for the IAAF to adopt a similar strategy for elimination races…



The live stream is available on YouTube and the IAAF’s Facebook page.
Territories and countries where the stream is available

As part of the IAAF’s broadcasting partnerships and agreements, media rights for the championships were distributed by EBU and ESPN for Europe and Africa and Dentsu Inc for the rest of the world. Here’s a list of broadcasters per territory where fans can tune in to watch.


European Athletics has announced the European team for the IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018 to be held on 8-9 September.

The team features several of the leading performers from the recent European Championships and includes the likes of triple European champion Dina Asher-Smith, European 1500m champion Jakob Ingebrigtsen, world 400m hurdles champion Karsten Warholm, world pole vault record-holder Renaud Lavillenie, world discus champion Andrius Gudzius, world and Olympic pole vault champion Katerina Stefanidi, world and Olympic discus champion Sandra Perkovic, world and Olympic hammer champion Anita Wlodarczyk and world 200m champions Ramil Guliyev and Dafne Schippers.

The team also includes four Czech stars who’ll be competing before their own fans at Ostrava’s Mestsky Stadium: shot putter Tomas Stanek, this year’s world indoor bronze medallist; Jakub Vadlejch, the 2017 world silver medallist in the javelin; European 1500m finalist Simona Vrzalova; and Nikola Ogrodnikova, the European javelin silver medallist.

Athletes will be aiming to collect team points, individual prize and a piece, quite literally, of the IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018 trophy.



100m: Jak Ali Harvey (TUR), Churandy Martina (NED)
200m: Ramil Guliyev (TUR), Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake (GBR)
400m: Kevin Borlee (BEL), Matthew Hudson-Smith (GBR)
800m: Andreas Kramer (SWE),  Michal Rozmys (POL)
1500m: Jakob Ingebrigtsen (NOR), Marcin Lewandsowski (POL)
3000m: Morhad Amdouni (FRA), Henrik Ingebrigtsen (NOR)
3000m steeplechase: Fernando Carro (ESP), Mahiedine Mekhissi (FRA)
110m hurdles: Pascal Martinot-Lagarde (FRA), Sergey Shubenkov (ANA)
400m hurdles: Yasmani Copello (TUR), Karsten Warholm (NOR)
High jump: Ilia Ivaniuk (ANA), Maksim Nedaskau (BLR)
Pole vault: Renaud Lavillenie (FRA), Timur Morgunov (ANA)
Long jump: Serhii Nykyforov (UKR), Miltiadis Tentoglou (GRE)
Triple jump: Nelson Evora (POR), Pablo Torrijos (ESP)
Shot put: Michal Haratyk (POL), Tomas Stanek (CZE)
Discus: Andrius Gudzius (LTU), Daniel Stahl (SWE)
Hammer: Bence Halasz (HUN), Wojciech Nowicki (POL)
Javelin: Thomas Rohler (GER), Jakub Vadlejch (CZE)
4x100m: Aykut Ay (TUR), Emre Zafer Barnes (TUR), Ramil Guliyev (TUR), Jak Ali Harvey (TUR), Yigitcan Hekimoglu (TUR), Izzet Safer (TUR)
Mixed 4x400m: Kevin Borlee (BEL), Matt Hudson-Smith (GBR)
Reserve: Ilya Shkurenov (ANA)

100m: Dina Asher-Smith (GBR), Dafne Schippers (NED)
200m: Ivet Lalova-Collio (BUL), Dafne Schippers (NED)
400m: Lisanne De Witte (NED), Justyna Swiety-Ersetic (POL)
800m: Natalia Pryshchepa (UKR), Anna Sabat (POL)
1500m: Sofia Ennaoui (POL), Simona Vrzalova (CZE)
3000m: Sifan Hassan (NED), Konstanze Klosterhalfen (GER)
3000m steeplechase: Anna Emilie Moller (DEN), Ophélie Claude-Boxberger (FRA)
100m hurdles: Pamela Dutkiewicz (GER), Elvira Herman (BLR)
400m hurdles: Meghan Beesley (GBR), Anna Ryzhkova (UKR)
High jump: Mirela Demireva (BUL), Maria Lasitskene (ANA)
Pole vault: Anzhelika Sidorova (ANA), Katerina Stefanidi (GRE)
Long jump: Malaika Mihambo (GER), Shara Proctor (GBR)
Triple jump: Kristin Gierisch (GER), Paraskevi Papahristou (GRE)
Shot put: Paulina Guba (POL), Christina Schwanitz (GER)
Discus: Nadine Muller (GER), Sandra Perkovic (CRO)
Hammer: Alexandra Tavernier (FRA), Anita Wlodarczyk (POL)
Javelin: Christin Hussong (GER), Nikola Ogrodnikova (CZE)
4x100m: Dina Asher-Smith (GBR), Kristal Awuah (GBR), Imani Lansiquot (GBR), Ashleigh Nelson (GBR), Bianca Williams (GBR)
Mixed 4x400m: Lisanne De Witte (NED), Justyna Swiety-Ersetic (POL)
Reserve: Katerina Cachova (CZE)

World Cup: Nine Kenyans in Africa’s Squad

Kenya, which topped the standings at the Africa Senior Athletics Championships in Asaba has nine athletes in Africa’s IAAF Continental Cup team for the championships to be held in Ostrava, Czech Republic on September 8-9.

Kenya with 19 medals, including 11 golds, will be represented by only nine athletes next month fewer than former champion South Africa which has the highest number of athletes, with 20.

The 2015 World javelin champion Julius Yego, who reclaimed his javelin throw title, and Mathew Sawe, who retained his high jump crown are the Kenyans in field events discipline that made it into the squad.

World, Olympics and Commonwealth Games gold medalist Conseslus Kipruto (3,000m steeplechase), World Hellen Obiri (5,000m) and Elijah Manangoi (1,500m) are in the team.

World record holder Beatrice Chepkoech (3000m steeplechase), who won women’s 3,000m steeplechase in Asaba, Wunderkind Edward Zakayo, who won the 5,000m title at the World Under-20 and Africa Championships, has been picked in his specialty.

The new Africa 1,500m champion Winny Chebet will square it off in the metric mile race with Emmanuel Korir, who settled for silver in 800m battling in the two-lap race.

The Kenyan quartet of Jared Momanyi, Alfas Kishoyian, Aaron Koech and Emmanuel Korir won the gold medal  in Asaba with a Championships Record time of 3:00.92, but none of the athletes were included in the African team.

Team Nigeria has 16 athletes; Morocco has a total of six athletes, while Egypt and Ethiopia both have four athletes on the team.

Cameroon, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Burundi, Swaziland, Uganda and Djibouti only have one athlete each on the team.

The Continental Cup is held every four years since 2010, replacing the previous Athletics World Cup and involves teams from Africa, the Americas, Asia-Pacific and Europe.

Rudisha to captain Africa for World Cup Glory

World 800m record holder ‘King’ David Rudisha will captain Africa’s team for Continental Cup in Ostrava, Czech Republic on September 8-9.

Rudisha replaces the 1997 and 2001 400m hurdles champion Moroccan hurdler Nezha Bidouane who initially considered for the role.
Rudisha who will not be competing in the event will lead the African team based on the changes brought by the IAAF in its format of selecting captains.

In the new format each team will have a legendary athlete as an honorary captain:

Africa: David Lekuta Rudisha, 2012, 2016 Olympic gold medalist and 2011, 2015  world 800m champion
Americas: Mike Powell, 1991 and 1993 world long jump champion and world record-holder
Asia-Pacific: Jana Pittman, 2003 and 2007 world 400m hurdles champion
Europe: Colin Jackson, 1993 and 1999 world 110m hurdles champion.

It is the third edition of the IAAF Continental Cup since the name and format was changed from the IAAF World Cup.

IAAF Continental Cup Trophy Symbolizes Teamwork and Unity

The winning team of the IAAF Continental Cup Ostrava 2018 will be awarded with a unique trophy at the end of the competition, which runs from 8-9 September.

For the first time in the history of this competition, each member of the winning team will take home their own piece of the trophy. The original trophy symbolises team spirit, unity, and cohesion between nations and continents.

“On the concept of how to design a trophy for the IAAF Continental Cup, we came out of the basic idea of ​​the competition, which is the team spirit and the fact that the individual is part of the team,” explains Libor Varhaník, Chairman of the Czech Athletics Union and Chairman of the local organising committee.

“We used Bohemian crystal, hand-crafted in the shape of sticks symbolising relay batons as a symbol of teamwork and community. At the same time, Bohemian Crystal brings a trace of Czech tradition to an international event of this importance.”

The trophy consists of 116 crystal relay batons and together they form the trophy as a whole, which is in the shape of an athletics track. The batons are embedded in three rows on a metal pedestal, which is about 80 centimetres in diameter.

“The centre of the trophy is made up of a combination of smaller elements of pressed glass in the colours of the continents of Europe, America, Asia-Pacific and Africa, in which we see unity among the nations,” says Varhanik. “After handing over the glass ‘batons’ to the winning team members, the central part belongs to the winning area federation.”

Each baton is original with its own cutting and colouring, so every athlete from the winning team will take a unique, handmade artefact with its own décor from Ostrava as a symbol of successful teamwork.

The trophy was designed by Jaroslav Koléšek and Josef Divín.

“The trophy consists of three parts constituting a whole: 116 crystal bars, oval for the victorious continental federation and the metal pedestal,” says Koléšek. “Bohemian crystal symbolises purity, fragility and uniqueness. The glass bars are dense on the glass whistle. The central area consists of a metal platform with inscribed event identification and 116 glass pieces. The metal pedestal is made of stainless steel. This choice is based on an environment typical of the Ostrava region and its history. The oval and technical shape evokes the arena.”

During the event, the trophy will be displayed in an illuminated showcase as a unique glowing object in front of the athletes and viewers at the entrance gate of the Městský Stadium.

Kenya criticizes African team selection for Continental Cup

Athletics Kenya on Wednesday questioned why the men’s 4x400m relay team did not receive an invitation to compete in next month’s IAAF Continental Cup in Ostrava, Czech Republic.

The Kenyan quartet of Jared Momanyi, Alfas Kishoyian, Aaron Koech and Emmanuel Korir won the gold medal at the African championships in Asaba, Nigeria, earlier this month, but none of the athletes were included in the African team.

The Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) has named just three athletes for the four-man event: Botswanans Nijel Amos and Baboloki Thebe, and South African Phora Thapelo.

“We are surprised that none of our athletes have been included in the team for the men’s 4×400 relay, and yet the team won the African title in a championship record of 3:00:92,” Athletics Kenya president Jackson Tuwei said.

“We don’t know what criteria was used (by the CAA) to pick the runners to make the relay team.”

Kenya, which topped the standings in Asaba with 19 medals, including 11 golds, will be represented by only nine athletes next month, while former champion South Africa has the highest number of athletes, with 20 in the team.

The Continental Cup is held every four years since 2010, replacing the previous Athletics World Cup and involves teams from Africa, the Americas, Asia-Pacific and Europe.

Nigeria has 16 athletes; Morocco has a total of six athletes, while Egypt and Ethiopia both have four athletes on the team.

Cameroon, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Burundi, Swaziland, Uganda and Djibouti only have one athlete each on the team.

Source: AFP

Zakayo to skip Diamond League meeting

Kenya’s Edward Zakayo will skip the Birmingham Diamond League meeting in England next week to take a deserved rest after he won the Africa Senior athletics championships.

Zakayo, 18, will however stage a short training camp in Italy and compete in one race before returning home to continue with his studies at the Kapsait Secondary School in Marakwet.

His coach Eric Kimaiyo, a two-time Honolulu Marathon champion, said Saturday, “We were hoping to prepare Zakayo for Birmingham Diamond League but that has been cancelled. He will now compete in one race in Italy before schools open in September.”

Another athlete also likely to skip the meeting in Birmingham is Africa javelin champion Julius Yego, who is keen to replenish his energies and focus on the IAAF Continental Cup where he looks forward to a challenge from Germany world leaders Johannes Vetter, Andreas Hofmann and reigning Olympic champion Thomas Rohler.