Doha Festival City, a national supplier of the IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019, welcomed famous world athletes over the weekend during the wrap-up event of the popular Mini Athletics Championship Competitions.
Meeting and greeting fans at Doha Festival City, two-time Olympic Champion, Ashton Eaton, as well as Gold and Silver Olympic Medal high jumper, Stefan Holm, and two-time track and field World Champion, Mike Powell, engaged with the competing children, encouraging and commending them for their performance.
Eaton said: “Mini worlds is a step forward for the future of athletics in Doha. The kids love it, the adults love it, and the athletes love it.”
Mike Powell saw it as a way to inspire children saying: “I had a blast playing with the kids at the mini-world athletics at Doha Festival City. It’s a great experience for the little ones to imagine themselves being world-class athletes. That’s where the “dream” begins!”
For three weeks, the Mini Athletics saw more than 4,630 children, aged 4 to 14, compete against each other across a variety of activities such as jumping, relay races, throwing, sprints, and hurdles, winning over 490 medals and other valuable prizes. The competitions took place at a replica of the Khalifa International Stadium, which was built by Doha Festival City for this special occasion.
Stefan Holm observed the set-up saying: “It was a nice experience and a great set-up, so hopefully it can help to raise the interest in sport and particularly for Athletics among the local kids.”
HE Sheikha Asma al-Thani, director of Marketing and Communications at the Local Organising Committee, said: “The collaboration with Doha Festival City in the form of this Mini World Athletics Competition proved to be very successful in engaging the public in sport. It is heart-warming to see all these children participating and working hard to enhance their skills. This event has brought athletics closer to the community and I am certain it has inspired many athletes-to-be.”
Doha Festival City general manager Robert Hall said: “We are very happy with the attendance the Mini World Athletics achieved and the interaction with our younger visitors, it was a true celebration of sport, sportsmanship, and diversity. We are also very proud of our partnership with the Local Organising Committee, which enabled us to bring the people of Qatar such a memorable event. Our thanks to everyone who made this a success and thanks to all the ambassadors who joined us here today to support and cheer the enthusiastic children, who clearly had a wonderful time”.
The Mini Athletics World Championship Competition took place from September 5 to October 3 at Doha Festival City in the mini Khalifa Stadium set up at the Centre Court, where children participated in competitions and training with professional coaches on Mondays and Wednesdays. The competitions were carried out on the side-line of the IAAF World Athletics Championships Doha 2019 to engage the public in sport and inspire upcoming generations.