World Athletics Half Marathon Championships Yangzhou 22 in November 2022 have been cancelled following the pandemic in China.
The world governing body in a meeting with the Local Organising Committee (LOC) and Chinese Athletics Association (CAA), mutually decided in the best interest of the sport and participants to terminate the Yangzhou event.
In a statement by Sebastian Coe, President of World Athletics, the championship cannot be held this year and the Chinese are innocent of any wrongdoing but assured prospective participants that there will be Riga next year to fill up the lapses.
“Unfortunately, the championships can’t be held this year, through no fault of the LOC, but our endurance athletes will have the opportunity to compete in Riga next year,’’ said Coe. The President commended the LOC and CAA for the excellent job done so far to ensure the event would have been topnotch.
He stressed that the world athletics governing body is amazed at the impressive organisation and have decided to award another athletics event to Yangzhou in 2027.
He added, “The Council’s decision to award another event to Yangzhou in 2027 indicates its faith in the organizing committee and willingness to return and stage a World Athletics Series Road running event there at the first available opportunity.”
Meanwhile, the body has disclosed that the World Athletics Road Running Championships, which will make their debut in Riga, Latvia, on 30 September – 1 October 2023, will incorporate the half marathon championships in future, as well as introduce world 5km championships.
The athletics body added that Mass races will be held alongside the elite championships to allow recreational runners to be part of a global festival of road running.