The Olympic Stadium has been prepared, the athletes have been selected and mosquitoes ordered to behave themselves, so we are all set for the greatest sporting spectacle on earth. The Games of the XXXI Olympiad, commonly known as Rio 2016, will take place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 5 August 2016 and British Athletics have announced a team of 80 athletes who will compete.
Defending Olympic champions Jess Ennis-Hill (Heptathlon), Greg Rutherford (Long Jump) and Mo Farah (5000m and 10,000m) are the headline acts in the track and field squad that starts their campaign on Friday, 12 August.
Also selected are the London 2012 medallists Christine Ohuruogo (400m) and Robbie Grabarz (High Jump) and Jo Pavey makes a record fifth Olympic Games, competing over 25 laps in the 10,000m.
The distance running events we are all most familiar with from our own efforts to emulate the stars in our local parkruns are 5000m; 10,000m and marathon. Time to mark your card for those events and the GB athletes to look out for:
- Friday 12th – Women’s 10,000m: Jo Pavey, Beth Potter, Jessica Andrews
- Saturday 13th – Men’s 10,000m: Mo Farah, Ross Millington, Andy Vernon
- Sunday 14th – Women’s Marathon: Sonia Samuels, Alyson Dixon
- Friday 19th – Women’s 5000m: Eilish McColgan, Steph Twell, Laura Whittle
- Saturday 20th – Men’s 5000m: Mo Farah, Tom Farrell, Andrew Butchart
- Sunday 21st – Men’s Marathon: Callum Hawkins, Tsegai Tewelde, Derek Hawkins
Athletics Team Leader Neil Black said: “I’m very excited by this group of athletes and what I think we can achieve in Rio. This is the best prepared and arguably strongest team we have ever selected. We believe the world class level of performances this group can achieve will see us challenging for a number of places on the podium.”
There is plenty to look forward to next month and the official Rio 2016 website has all the information you need to plan your Games.