Following an initial survey conducted by UK Athletics on the recommendation of the Technical Committee, distances attained in the discus competitions at the ThrowsFest event on 1 July at Alexander Stadium, Birmingham will be marked as a “D” for downhill.
UK Athletics undertook the survey following the extraordinary results on the day, which saw a larger-than-normal number of Personal Bests and Season’s Bests performances.
The survey sought to clarify whether the landing sector was over the allowable gradient. For legal throws, a minus fall cannot be more than 1:1000. Therefore, for a distance of 60m, the allowable tolerance cannot be over a 6cm decline.
The survey found that the discus area had a minimum decline of 12cm and a maximum of 26cm.
Which leads to the following conclusion: Assuming a 45° average landing angle of each discus, using an average downhill of 19cm, minus the 6cm allowable tolerance, means that each thrower can remove 13cm from their best throw to give a “truer” reflection of their performance.
However, in accordance with IAAF rules, the marks will not be recognised as valid, in much the same way as sprints performances with following winds over the legal limit of 2.0 metres per second are not. Therefore, for the purposes of selection standards, these marks will not be considered as valid performances.
However, the performances achieved at ThrowsFest will be taken into consideration by the UK Athletics Selection Committee as part of a profile of performances from each athlete when considering selection for the forthcoming IAAF World Championships in Osaka, as is the case across all other events.
UK Athletics has communicated directly with all discus participants at ThrowsFest to clarify the matter. UK Athletics is working closely with Birmingham City Council to evaluate the outside throwing sectors at Alexander Stadium for the purposes of future competitions at the venue.