Olympics: Purple track for Paris should be ‘very, very good’, say organizers

April 17, 2024 - 6:54 PM
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The Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games' athletics track of two shades of purple manufactured by Mondo Sports Flooring is installed inside the Stade de France stadium, in Saint-Denis near Paris, France, April 9, 2024. (Reuters/Sarah Meyssonnier)

 The purple athletics track being laid in Paris’s Stade de France for the summer Olympics does not guarantee records but adjustments brought in by the manufacturer seem promising, said Alain Blondel, the sports manager for athletics events at Paris 2024.

“It’s the same track, the same base as in Tokyo (where the last Summer Olympics were held), with small changes introduced,” Blondel said, adding that he “couldn’t say” if the track would be fast.

“But the first indications suggest in many ways it will be a very, very good track.”

Three athletics world records were set during the Tokyo Games — postponed for a year until 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic: the women’s and men’s 400 meters hurdles and the women’s triple jump, by respectively Sydney McLaughlin (United States), Karsten Warholm (Norway) and Yulimar Rojas (Venezuela).

The track is being supplied for the 13th Olympics in a row by the Italian firm Mondo.

“We really liked the purple as it allowed us to move away from the usual colors,” said Blondel, a former decathlon European champion.

The track, involving the manual layering of more than 1,000 rolls of material, should be completed by June 1. The Games open on July 26.

— Reporting by Manuel Ausloos and Vincent Daheron; Writing by Benoit Van Overstraeten; Editing by Clare Fallon