The Prefontaine Classic Might Need To Find A New Home In 2019

The Prefontaine Classic Might Need To Find A New Home In 2019
Photo: © Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
The Hayward Field renovations have been delayed again and may affect the venue's ability to host the Prefontaine Classic, NCAA Outdoor Championships, and Oregon high school state championships in 2019, according to a report filed today in The Oregonian.

The Eugene, Oregon, stadium was awarded the 2021 IAAF World Championships under the provision that the venue be modernized and its capacity expanded from 10,500 seats to 30,000 permanent and temporary seats. The renovations were originally set to begin last summer upon conclusion of the U.S. Olympic Trials; since then, the blue prints have changed multiple times and the planned addition of 14,000 seats has decreased to just 10,000 seats. 

Construction is now scheduled to begin next summer in 2018 and the stadium is expected to be closed until renovations are complete in 2020. Original plans called for a break in renovation to allow the facility to host the annual Pre Classic, NCAAs, and Oregon state meet. The Prefontaine Classic is reportedly looking for a new host site and potential in-state options include Lane Community College, Oregon State, and Lewis & Clark College.

The University of Oregon would likely not host any home meets in 2019.

The original projected cost for the project was $68 million. The current estimated cost has not been reported.

The FBI and IRS are reportedly investigating whether any corruption was at play in the IAAF decision to award the 2021 World Championships to Eugene. Instead of undergoing the formal bidding process, Eugene was awarded the 2021 bid via a "secret vote" within the IAAF.
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