Moncton has received lots of praise this past year thanks to world-class events that continue to show the city can compete on the world stage. This weekend, the kudos keep coming – this time from half-way around the world.
The eyes of the athletics world will be on the Principality of Monaco during the next couple of days as the International Association of Athletics Federations presents the 2010 World Athletics Gala on Sunday 21 November.
Hosted by International Athletic Foundation (IAF) Honorary President HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco and IAF & IAAF President Lamine Diack, the World Athletics Gala will be highlighted by the announcement of the Male and Female World Athletes of the Year 2010.
This years Gala also celebrates the success of all the IAAF sponsored events held in 2010 including Moncton 2010, the World Junior Championships held in Moncton this past July. Over 75,000 spectators took in this global event that featured over 1500 athletes from over 160 different countries. Millions more watched coverage around the world. The event, being called one of the best world junior championships ever, was a highlight of the year in Athletics and saw a new crop of athletes begin to make their mark on the world stage.
The Chair of the Local Organizing Committee for Moncton 2010 Larry Nelson, who is being represented in Monaco by Committee members Bill Whalen and Ian Fowler, says that the World Gala is a fitting way to wrap up an amazing year.
“Never in a million years did I believe we could not deliver but as to the degree which we delivered, it was unbelievable, this (gala) a tribute to every participant, volunteer and perhaps most of all to the fans who to a person supported, encouraged and celebrated the success of the athletes and our event,” says Nelson. “I should also state that possibly ninety percent or perhaps higher knew nothing or maybe little of the product we delivered, that is a testament to all.”
Nelson says that the Moncton 2010 event reinforced Moncton’s capabilities and stated that the city should continue to bid for world class events like this one - and build on the foundation that was set,
Athletes in the running for male and female athlete of the year include male American sprinter Tyson Gay who defeated world record holder Usain Bolt at the World Championships in Stockholm and female sprinter Veronica Campbell Brown of Jamaica who dominated both the 100 and 200m throughout 2010.
The Gala’s 600+ guests, will include many of the world’s top athletics stars, past and present including a number of the young stars who competed in Moncton at the world juniors. The Gala goes Sunday night in Monaco.