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Volume 10 No. 25

Events and Attractions

U.S.-based Competitor Group is headed for the birthplace of the Beatles for its next addition to its growing European Rock 'n' Roll Marathon series, and has plans for global expansion in South America and Asia. The Rock 'n' Roll Liverpool Marathon & ½ Marathon will take place on Bank Holiday, Sunday, May 25, and joins six European host cities -- Edinburgh, Nice, Lisbon, Dublin and Madrid -- with Oslo set to host its first event next year. Competitor Group CEO Scott Dickey told SBD Global the Rock 'n' Roll series has plans to add a potential eighth marathon to its European list in a city yet to be announced. Dickey said, "We're starting to develop a pan-European presence that's got a lot of value." In addition to its European expansion, Competitor Group hopes to tap in to other int'l markets."We're deep in conversations in South America and Asia and we intend to continue taking the Rock 'n' Roll to the far corners of the earth," Dickey said. The move into the int'l market presents its own challenges. "From a business perspective, it’s always more challenging dealing with different languages, currencies and cultures," he said. "It’s a slower growth model. It’s not like you can just plant a flag and plop down and expect to be successful. There’s definitely a longer lead time to market the event and build credibility for Competitor Group as a business partner with the cities and sponsors.” With the inaugural Dublin Rock 'n' Roll ½ Marathon on Aug. 5 attracting 6,500 runners, 47% from out of the country, 25% from the U.S., Dickey said that the company plans to aggressively market the Liverpool race in North America, where the Rock 'n' Roll series already has a presence in 25 cities. Dickey: "We're certainly going to use the clout and breadth of our media assets here in the U.S."

FAB FOUR CONNECTION: Keeping in line with the musical theme of the series -- live band performances along the route and a post-race concert -- Dickey said he plans to promote the city's Beatles history. "We have an Elvis thematic here in the States, particularly in Las Vegas," Dickey said. "I think a little Paul, George, Ringo and John thematic is going to have a nice impact on attracting American runners to come over to Liverpool." The Liverpool race route is set to start and finish at the city's lake front, with full course details to be released after the start of registration on Sept. 1. Competitor Group secured a three-year deal with the city of Liverpool for the event, and expects to draw around 10,000 runners.

Munich "has reportedly already secured six of 15 votes to become Germany's Euro 2020 venue, while only two German Football Federation (DFB) officials make the case for Berlin," according to the ABENDZEITUNG MÜNCHEN. The DFB's 15-member committee "will decide about Germany's venue for Euro 2020, which will be played across the continent, on Aug. 30." The four German Football League (DFL) representatives on the DFB committee "are reportedly rallying behind Munich." The reason for it is that Munich's Allianz Arena, "unlike Berlin's Olympic Stadium, is owned by a club and therefore event revenue would stay in the DFL's circulation." In addition to the DFL representatives, DFB delegate Rainer Koch and national team Manager Oliver Bierhoff "are reportedly also in favor of Munich." Therefore the city "needs only two more votes to reach a majority" (ABENDZEITUNG MÜNCHEN, 8/21).

The German Athletics Federation (DLV) "is considering submitting a bid to host world championships," according to the DPA. DLV President Clemens Prokop said, "Currently we are bidding to host the 2018 European Athletics Championships. There, we have managed to prompt all competitors to voluntarily withdraw. When the event will be awarded in November, with hopefully a positive outcome, we will at the appropriate time start thinking about a world championship bid together with Berlin." The next two world championships in '15 and '17 will be hosted by Beijing and London, respectively (DPA, 8/21).

Indonesia will this weekend "become the first country in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to host a sumo wrestling tournament." The two-day event, to be held Friday and Saturday at Gelora Bung Karno Stadium in Jakarta, will "feature 40 of the world’s best sumo wrestlers" (JAKARTA GLOBE, 8/21). ... Allegations by sailing team Oracle Team USA that Emirates Team New Zealand "had trespassed to gather information have been dismissed" by Team NZ as "laughable" (NEW ZEALAND HERALD, 8/21). ... Vietnam's return to "top-level regional golf has been postponed until later this season in the latest unwanted development for the sport in Asia." September's inaugural Volvik-Sky Lake Vietnam Masters, "set to be the richest played in the country, has been delayed." No reason "for the delay was given on the Asian Tour's website" (AFP, 8/21).