BEIJING, April 16 – The United States will host the world athletics championships for the first time, the sport’s governing body said Thursday as it bypassed the normal bidding process to award the 2021 event to Eugene, Oregon.
The IAAF, meeting in Beijing, said the decision to forgo any bidding and confer hosting rights on Eugene was “in response to what was seen as a unique strategic opportunity” of having the event in the US.
The championships are held every two years, and this year they are taking place in the Chinese capital.
The 2017 edition will be in London. They have previously been held in various European capitals, Canada’s Edmonton, and twice in Japan.
The IAAF said in a statement the decision “was taken in order to grant the sport’s access to one of the most historically successful countries in athletics as well as the most powerful economy in the world”.
IAAF president Lamine Diack, who is due to step down in August, said it was “a strategic decision that enables us to take advantage of a unique opportunity that may never arise again” and was taken “in the interest of the global development of our sport”.
The 2007 games in Osaka were also awarded without a bidding process, the statement from the International Association of Athletics Federations added.
Eugene’s bid leader Vin Lananna said: “We promise to deliver an outstanding championships for the sport of track and field in America and around the world.”