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Qatar Super Grand Prix ready to go

7 May 2008

A high quality field of athletes will be seen in action during the Qatar Athletic Super Grand Prix to be held here on May 9.

Qatar Association of Athletics Federation President, Dahlan Al Hamad, speaking at the pre-event press conference yesterday, said that he expected a high level competition at the Qatar Sports Club on Friday.

“Qatar Athletic Super Grand Prix is an important event in the IAAF calendar. There are points up for grabs for the athletes. There are over 200 athletes competing here in Doha during the one day event and I am sure you can expect a high level competition,” Dahlan said.

Dahlan also explained that it was very important for them to organise a good event so that it would enhance the image of Doha, which is bidding for the 2016 Olympics.

“It is important for us to organise a successful Super Grand Prix. As you know we are bidding for 2016 Olympics and our organising skills will be put to test. We are doing our best to make this event successful. A good event will help us in our bid for 2016 Olympics,” Dahlan explained.

Well-known athletes Allyson Felix, Jeremy Wariner (both US), Blanca Vlasic (Croatia), Qatar’s very own sprinter Samuel Francis, US shotputter Reese Hoffa and a host of World and Olympic champions will be under the spotlight.

“There will be 12 events for men and nine for women. Talking about Qatar’s participation, there are 16 athletes in the fray,” Dahlan said.

“Most of the athletes who will be competing here will also be seen at the Olympics in Beijing later this year. So people here in Doha will have a great opportunity to witness them,” Dahlan opined.

Jamaica’s 100m world record holder Asafa Powell will not be here as he is injured.

“Asafa (Powell) was expected to run here. But unfortunately he is injured at the moment and will not be making to Doha. Hopefully we can have him here next year,” Dahlan said.

Qatar Athletic Super Grand Prix has grown in stature over the years since its inception in 1997. For more than a decade, it has seen a number of records tumbling. One can expect a great evening at the Qatar Sports Club come Friday.

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