The track and field organizing body IAAF showed confidence Friday that its preparations for Qatar’s harsh weather will be sufficient, announcing that the women’s marathon scheduled just before midnight local time (5 p.m. EDT) will proceed as scheduled.
The IAAF statement says the Wet Bulb Globe Temperature, a measurement of heat that factors humidity, wind and sunlight into the equation, will be below 30 degrees Celsius (86 degrees Fahrenheit), which falls within the range organizers expected.
Still, the IAAF left open the possibility of a late change: “Any decision to alter the starting time of the event will be made by 10.30pm, on the recommendation of the IAAF Medical Delegate.”
Plans to beat the heat include an increase in the usual number of stations at which runners can pick up drinks. The race will be run on a loop along the Doha waterfront.
Runners set to compete include defending champion Rose Chelimo of Bahrain and Kenya’s Ruth Chepngetich, who ran the third-fastest women’s marathon of all time earlier this year in Dubai.
The Olympic Channel will carry the race live. NBC Sports Gold will have extended coverage starting at 4:30 p.m. EDT.
NBCSN will have live coverage of the day’s other events, including early rounds of the men’s 100m and the women’s pole vault, from 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. EDT, and NBC Sports Gold will stream live coverage of every event over the 10-day meet.
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