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Last Updated: Sunday, 13 November 2005, 19:57 GMT
IAAF announces new tour structure
IAAF president Lamine Diack
IAAF president Diack hopes the new system will showcase the sport
World athletics chiefs have revamped their tour calendar in a bid to raise the sport's profile and image.

The IAAF's World Athletics Tour will be made up of 24 elite events, compared to 36 in 2005, spread over two levels.

The existing Golden League and Super Grand Prix meetings will form the top echelon while level two will be known as the IAAF Grand Prix.

The first meet takes place in Melbourne on 9 March, with Gateshead playing host on 11 June and London on 28 July.

The two-tiered structure of the Tour means there will be different prize money and qualification points on offer for the season-ending showcase, the World Athletics Final.

"The new World Athletics Tour, with a reduced number of higher quality meetings, will help us to maintain only the best meetings in the world under the IAAF umbrella," said IAAF president Lamine Diack.

"At the same time the scheme will help to raise the standard of area circuits around the world."

The IAAF have awarded the 2008 world indoor championships to Valencia in Spain while the 2007 world cross country championships will be held in the Kenyan city of Mombasa.

Calendar for the World Athletics Tour:

9 March - Melbourne Grand Prix
29 April - Dakar Grand Prix
6 May - Osaka Grand Prix
12 May - Doha Super Grand Prix
21 May - Belem Grand Prix
28 May - Hengelo Grand Prix
28 May - Eugene Grand Prix
30 May - Ostrava Grand Prix
2 June - Oslo Golden League
11 June - Gateshead Grand Prix
3 July - Athens Super Grand Prix
7 July - Paris Golden League
11 July - Lausanne Super Grand Prix
14 July - Rome Golden League
17 July - Madrid Grand Prix
25 July - Stockholm Super Grand Prix
26 July - Helsinki Grand Prix
28 July - London Super Grand Prix
18 August - Zurich Golden League
20 August - Monaco Super Grand Prix
25 August - Brussels Golden League
27 August - Rieti Grand Prix
3 September - Berlin Golden League
Date to be confirmed: Zagreb Grand Prix

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