Team Ingebrigtsen v Team Cheruiyot – Maurie Plant Memorial Race Impossible Games, Bislett June 11.
- In 2020, Due to Covid-19 it is not possible to have international participation from around the world like we are used to. But with some creativity we have managed to create a unique match between Team Ingebrigtsen and Team Cheruiyot through international cooperation, involving both Athletics Kenya, Omega and our host broadcaster NRK, meet director Steinar Hoen says. - This will be the first virtual race at such level in the history of athletics. - Team Ingebrigtsen runs at Bislett while Team Cheruiyot will run in Nairobi. The race will be shown on international TV as a split screen competition.
- Athletics Kenya is fully supportive of this creative idea from the Oslo DL. Serious racing within a safe environment whilst also entertainment for avid athletics fans the world over is to be welcomed. Our planning has begun, and we thank Oslo for involving us, says AK President Lt.Gen.(Rtd) Jackson Tuwei.
- Both teams will start with five runners and will have to finish with three. The winner of the match will be the team with the best overall time for three runners. But of course, the individual times will count as well.Steve Cram is to comment the Impossible Games in English. Cram is the European record holder at the distance with 4:51.39. That record could be in danger when the Ingebrigtsen brothers put on full power 11 June.
- Maurie loved middle distance running and he loved Bislett. But he also loved nontraditional arrangements of events. In his earlier years, serving the athletic family, he was the mastermind behind countless matches between countries around the world. Our idea is to honor him with such an event which is completely in line with everything he loved, Hoen says.
One person knowing Maurie Plant better than most, after working together in athletics for a lifetime, is fellow Australian Nic Bideau from Melbourne Track Club:
In a statement he says:
"This is fantastic news. For myself, and the many athletes I have brought to Oslo in events Maurie has helped put together, we are proud to see Maurie's contribution at Bislett recognized. We have been long time beneficiaries of Maurie's passion for the sport and the Bislett Games and are terribly disappointed not to be there this year.
If there was one thing Maurie loved more than the Bislett Games, it was the sport of athletics itself and the great competition it provides.
I have no doubt he would be extremely proud that during this pandemic that has proved so challenging to sport everywhere, for his name to be associated with an event Bislett would humble him. Maurie was a huge fan of the most interesting athletes for many years, the Ingebrigtsen family, and have loved watching them take on some of the best from Kenya.As fans, and as those involved in middle distance running, we look forward to seeing this happen and congratulate you on the concept.