Magic number of 100,000 sold tickets almost achieved
A significant barrier is about to fall. 100 days before the opening of the European Athletics Championships (6th – 11th August in the Munich Olympic Stadium), almost 100,000 tickets have been sold. "This is a huge success, says the delighted managing Vice President of the Organising Committee and head of the Olympic Park, Wilfrid Spronk. "It is a good basis on which to build upon over the next few months. All the organisational preparations being made by the OC are on schedule as well. This was also demonstrated to the EAA during a council meeting held last weekendAnother success can also be reported, which underlines the drawing power of the European Championships in the Olympic Park: Munich is preparing to welcome a record number of participants. To date, 39 of the 49 member federations of the EAA have registered 1600 athletes. Although experience has shown that around 20 per cent must be subtracted from this impressive figure, the previous record level of 1259 participants achieved at the 1998 European Championships in Budapest will be exceeded by far.
Entering the last 100 days before the European Championships in August, tangible work will also be getting underway in the Olympic Stadium. On 6th May, once the German Bundesliga season is over, the bulldozers will be taking up position under the tent roof. The running track and long jump runways are to be replaced, and a new polytan surface covering an area of 6200 square metres is to be laid specially for the Championships. The old one is five years old and was installed for the European Cup finals in 1997. "It has suffered greatly from the weather and from being continually taken up and re-laid for events such as football matches or open air festivals", explains Spronk. In addition, there will be new concrete pole boxes, takeoff boards, and shot-putting and discus rings. Other overdue renovation work is also to be carried out, which will benefit visitors to the Olympic Stadium long after the Championships have finished. These measures include the installation of completely new backed seating for 54,266 people. Overall, the Olympiapark München GmbH will be investing around 3.8 million euros in the renovations, including redesigning the catering infrastructure and building modern kiosks.