Meet returns to Chch in 2012
15 September 2011
International Athletics Returns to Quake-Hit City
New Zealand’s premier track and field event, the International Track Meet, will remain in quake-hit Christchurch for 2012. It was announced today that the ITM will take place on Saturday 4 February in historic surroundings in the central city at Christ’s College, one of New Zealand’s oldest private schools. The event will be held for the first time on a grass track on the 50th anniversary weekend of Peter Snell’s two world records set on grass in Christchurch in 1962. As one of the few top level sporting events to be confirmed for Christchurch next year, organisers expect the meet to be a wonderful boost to the sporting public.
New Zealand’s top athletics stars, Olympic 1500m silver medallist Nick Willis and three times world champion shot putter Valerie Adams are very supportive of the event and have already indicated their intention to be involved, and are looking forward to an opportunity to put smiles on the faces of Christchurch residents. Adams had been scheduled to compete at this event for the first time in 2011, while Willis has been a driving force behind it since its inception in 2009, and had been scheduled to be presented with his newly minted Olympic silver medal at the 2011 meet.
The 2011 International Track Meet was one of the event casualties of the Christchurch Earthquake with the destruction of QEII Stadium just four days before the event was due to be held. Now the International Track and Field Trust, established to ensure the event entrenches its place in the NZ sporting calendar, believes that the retention of the meet will be just the tonic that the city needs. The trustees said today that when it became clear that QEII would be unavailable, they looked for an alternative stadium elsewhere in New Zealand but ultimately decided that it was important to keep the event in the city, both for the people of Christchurch and to demonstrate to the world that Christchurch is still open for business. “Holding the International Track Meet on the grass track at Christ’s College on such a special anniversary for NZ athletics will enable us to create something really unique and exciting for Christchurch out of difficult circumstances”, said trustee Paul Coughlan. “The crowd will be much closer to the athletes and we are aiming to create some of the feel of the provincial grass track meets of the 1960’s.”
The historical significance was a factor in setting the date, which will be the day after the 50th anniversary of Snell’s 800m and 880yds world records, set at Lancaster Park in 1962. A commemorative function to mark that date is planned to be held in conjunction with the meet, on the Friday evening, and there will also be celebrations in Wanganui the previous weekend, the anniversary of his world record for the mile, also run on grass at the legendary Cook’s Gardens.
Tickets will be on sale in December, with sponsorship and hosting packages currently available, and ticketholders from the 2011 event who have retained their tickets will be able to exchange these for a ticket to the 2012 event free of charge. Full details are available on the meet website www.internationaltrackmeet.co.nz.
Dear International Track Meet Ticket Holders,
1st March 2011On behalf of the International Track Meet, we would like to express our deepest concern and sorrow for all those in Christchurch and around New Zealand who have been affected by the Christchurch Earthquake on Feb 22nd. In the context of those families who have lost loved ones, their homes, and treasured possessions, the cancellation of the Track Meet pales into insignificance.
For those of you outside Christchurch we can advise that QEII Stadium suffered significant damage with the track broken up and extensive liquefaction. However, quite apart from the damage to the stadium and Christchurch hotels & infrastructures, it would not have been possible or appropriate to bring athletes & visitors into Christchurch under those circumstances, and we were relieved that athletes were yet to arrive in Christchurch. It was with great regret that the event had to be cancelled.
Thank you for supporting our event, an enormous amount of work went into bringing it together, and we received support from people all over the world, and we are confident that collectively we had created something very special. We are pleased to confirm that all ticket purchasers (where we have your details) will be sent via post a copy of the current vo2max magazine that was to be given away at the gate. This edition features an excellent preview of the International Track Meet.
We would like to express our admiration and appreciation to Nick Willis, his training squad, and the people of Wellington who organised and supported the “Track Meet 4 Christchurch” with 3 days’ notice, and staged the replacement medal ceremony and a top class meet, and most importantly raised a phenomenal $20,100 for the Christchurch Earthquake Appeal. Three of our organisers were invited to make the trip and it was a privilege to see Nick receive his Olympic Medal. Thanks Wellington.
Over the past three years, we have put an enormous amount of effort into building an event that is sustainable and will have a long term future on the New Zealand sporting calendar that will add value and benefit to our current and future athletes.
Our vision, enthusiasm and determination is unwavering. The International Track Meet is owned by the International Track & Field Trust, which has a mandate to ensure the continuity of the meet to provide opportunities for the future of developing New Zealand athletes. We are determined to hold an International Track Meet in 2012.
We are currently assessing the financial position of the 2011 meet to establish the full extent of our existing commitments and where the event stands financially. Despite this we are offering our valued meet and coaching seminar ticket holders the following options.
Please advise us of your preference before the 31st of May 2011 – after this time any remaining tickets will be assumed to be held for entry to the 2012 meet.
1. Donate your ticket refund to the Christchurch Earthquake Relief Fund (receipts issued)
2. Donate your ticket value to the International Track and Field Trust to assist with future sustainability of the meet (receipts issued)
3. Full refund (nett of any credit card or courier fees if applicable)
4. Retain ticket for entry into the 2012 International Track Meet (tickets fully transferable)
While we have details of ticket holders who purchased online there will be a delay accessing and verifying ticket purchases from QEII Stadium, Smiths Sports Shoes and Shoe Clinic.
Due to the above delays in accessing information and the fact that we will be honouring 2011 tickets in 2012 we ask that if you would prefer any of the first three options that you return your tickets along with details of your preference and how we can refund your money if applicable (either by electronic transfer or cheque) along with current postal address for any receipts due.
Please post tickets to:
International Track and Field Trust
PO Box 31041
If you have any further questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to contact Leyton on either firstname.lastname@example.org or 021 719 900.
On behalf of the International Track Meet and our valued sponsors we extend our sincere sympathy and regards to the people of Christchurch and everyone who has been affected by the earthquake. We hope that you and your family are safe & well, and look forward to bringing you an exciting event in 2012.
International Track Meet Team