Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Athletissima '10

The field

Runners in action

The High Jump!

Usain Bolt after his win in the 100m sprint


The venue: Stade Olympique

Fireworks after the meet

In early July, I attended the annual Athletissima track and field meet in Lausanne. This is a huge track and field meet where the top competitors in track, long jump, high jump and the javelin throw come to compete. As an avid runner (and fan of other runners!), I have always wanted to experience a live track and field meet. It is a popular sport in Europe and a huge crowd turned out for the Lausanne meet (it took us 2 hours to get back to Lausanne after work that day!)

We are lucky to have the venue for this event, le Stade Olympique, located on the same street as us! Once we made it home from work, I did a quick change and then walked half a block up the hill to the entrance. The only tickets left were for the jam-packed "cheap-seats!" (they must have sold more tickets than seats, because it was standing room only), but I still had fun! It was inspiring to watch the athletes in action. (Check out my video below!) The most well-known athlete in attendance was Usain Bolt, from Jamaica, who competed in the 100 meter sprint. He is famous for setting the World Record of 9.58 seconds in 2009 at the Berlin Championships. He set a meet record this year in Lausanne with a time of 9.82 seconds....awesome! The field events were incredible as well, as the athletes jumped high, long and threw far to try and make it on top of the podium!

I left just as the last race was finishing and walked back to our apartment. Just after I got home, I heard booming sounds coming from the Stade Olympique and I raced to the window to catch the fireworks show that was directly over our apartment building! I had no idea there was a fireworks display at the end, but luckily we were privy to a front row seat since all we had to do was open the bedroom window to see it! It was a fantastic event and I definitely plan on going back next year.

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