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SBD Global/January 25, 2013/Events and Attractions

London Olympic Stadium Chosen To Host British Athletics London Grand Prix

London's Olympic Stadium will host its first sporting event since the 2012 Games on the anniversary of the Opening Ceremony, according to Eleanor Crooks of the PA. The London Grand Prix athletics meeting, part of the elite Diamond League series, will move from its usual home at Crystal Palace and will take place on July 27, a year to the day after the Olympics began "in spectacular fashion." Already, 15,500 tickets have been sold and "will have to be refunded." Those buyers, however, will be first in line for Olympic Stadium tickets, "but it might be at an elevated price" (PA, 1/24). In London, Tom Peck noted athletes such as Usain Bolt, David Rudisha and Greg Rutherford "would also be highly likely to compete in the event," which is scheduled to take place two weeks before the World Championships in Moscow. The London Legacy Development Corp. announced the news of the grand prix, which will form part of a series of events in the stadium on the anniversary weekend, "with a large scale concert also likely" (INDEPENDENT, 1/24).

ATHLETES ENTHUSED:  Also in London, Simon Hart wrote the decision to move the athletics event "has drawn an enthusiastic response from athletes." Olympic heptathlon Gold Medalist Jessica Ennis described the news as "brilliant." Ennis: "It will give athletes and fans who did not get to experience the amazing venue the chance to go there, and for those of us who had the most incredible experiences on the track and field, an opportunity to relive a few memories." The Crystal Palace meeting "usually attracts a sell-out crowd" of 22,000. However, "UK Athletics officials are optimistic" that the 80,000-seat Olympic Stadium could reach capacity (TELEGRAPH, 1/24).
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