Usain Bolt could be in line to compete at the Olympic Stadium this summer, one year on from his record breaking achievements at London 2012.
The 'London Anniversary Games' are being staged at the venue in Stratford in July to mark one year since the Games. And UK Athletics, the sport’s governing body, want the Jamaican as the star attraction for three days of action, report The Evening Standard.
Last summer, Bolt won the 100m, became the first man to defend the 200m Olympic title, while also collecting a third gold in the 100m sprint relay. His performances were among the highlights of an unforgettable fortnight.
It is hoped that Bolt will be one of many major names lured back to the capital for the event, the biggest athletics meeting of the summer after the World Championships in Moscow two weeks later.
The Chancellor, George Osborne, had previously paved the way for the top athletes to compete at the Diamond League meeting after announcing a one-off exemption from income tax to global stars coming over.
And Ed Warner, chairman of UK Athletics, said: “That certainly makes it easier to negotiate with athletes’ agents.”
Of the potential stars in action, Warner added: “Nothing is announced yet but that will be in the next few weeks. We’re trying to replicate some of the big head to heads that made the Olympics and Paralympics so special.
“My dream is to get Usain Bolt here, too. We’ll see where we get to in those discussions. We’re pursuing that and we hope to be successful.”
It is hoped British Olympic champions such as Jessica Ennis and Mo Farah will compete in the final warm-up for the World Championships. A third day of action, on the Sunday, will solely be dedicated to Paralympic athletics.
Already the appetite for tickets, which are yet to go on sale, is high with those interested encouraged to register at britishathletics.org.uk. The stadium will not quite be up to capacity for any of the three days because of health and safety concerns amid building work being done to revamp the Olympic Park but Warner is hopeful as many as 200,000 people will attend.
Ticket prices have not yet been announced but are expected to be considerably lower than for the Games.
Warner added: “There will be a substantial number at much lower price points. We want to fill the stadium.
“We really hope there’s the appetite from Londoners, from people who loved the Games, and from those who weren’t lucky enough to get tickets.”
- More about:
- 100m Race
- 200m Race
- Athletics, Track And Field
- Evening Standard
- Income Tax
- Running (sport)
- Sprint Running
- Usain Bolt