International flags surround Hayward Field.

International flags surround Hayward Field.

Karen Richards / KLCC

For many Olympic track and field athletes, the next stop after Tokyo will be Eugene. The Prefontaine Classic is Aug. 20-21 at Hayward Field.

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The Pre Classic was postponed from its usual May time slot because of the pandemic. Now, it’ll give international athletes a chance to see the location of next year’s biggest event.

Jeff Oliver is a spokesperson for the event. He told KLCC, “A lot of these athletes, it’s kind of their first visit to Eugene, to the new Hayward Field. They’re going to put up good marks here this year in August, but obviously their goal is to come back, and next year it’s the World Championships, and do it again.”

Oliver said for professionals, the Olympics weren’t necessarily the end of the season. Medal winners Athing Mu, Ryan Crouser and Raevyn Rogers are on the start lists. Oliver said because the venue is outdoors, as of now there are no COVID restrictions. Ticket-holders can also attend Friday night’s women’s distance races.

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