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Mixed-sex races added to relay games

CONTEST: America’s Sharika Nelvis jumping hurdles

ATHLETES FROM all over the world have thrown their support behind the decision to include two new events to the programme of the IAAF World Relays.

A mixed 2x2x400m relay and mixed shuttle hurdles relay have been added to the sporting contest in Yokohama this year.

US indoor champion hurdler Sharika Nelvis, European champion Pascal Marti- not-Lagarde, 800m specialist Adam Kszczot and world 100m hurdles champion Sally Pearson are just some of the athletes who are looking forward to competing in Japan later this year.

Joining the men's and women's 4x100m, 4x200m and 4x400m and the mixed 4x400m, it means there will now be three men's events, three women's events and three mixed events being contested on the weekend of May 11 and 12.

ADDITION

The mixed shuttle hurdles event is a completely new addition to the World Relays programme. Usually held as a single-sex race, the event in Yokohama will feature two men and two women on each team.

The men will run 110m hurdles in one direction and will then hand over to the first woman on the team, who will run back up the straight to hand over to the second man, and so on.

To account for the extra distance, women will run out an extra 10 metres at the end of their leg.

“This is super great news,” said Nelvis. “I’ve always wanted to be in a shuttle hurdles relay. Hopefully this opens the door to it being in the Olympics one day in the future, but it being at the World Relays is a great start. And it should be fun!”

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