6 Sep 2017

German legend Drechsler to return to Berlin as official

Unforgotten are her multiple gold medals in the long jump from the Olympic Games, World Championships and European Championships and thirteen years after announcing her retirement, Heike Drechsler will return to Berlin’s Olympic Stadium - but not as an active athlete.

Image credit: European Athletics
Image credit: Glasgow City Council

Drechsler will help to ensure that the horizontal jumpers will enjoy the best possible competitive environment by working as an official judge at the European Athletics Championships in Berlin from 7-12 August which will be held as part of the inaugural multi-sports European Championships in conjunction with Glasgow from 2-12 August.

“I have dreamt of being part of the Berlin 2018 European Athletics Championships next summer. If you love the sport of athletics, you want to give something back,“ said Drechsler, who claimed eight major outdoor long jump titles between 1983 and 2000.

But despite her many years competing at the highest level around the world, Drechsler - like all officials - still had to participate in a series of workshops organised by the German Athletic Federation. Drechsler also worked at the German Youth Championships for the first time in her new official role, raking the long jump pit – and by doing so, giving back to the next generation.

And next summer, Drechsler will be giving back to the current generation of European athletes by performing similar duties in the Olympic Stadium where Drechsler bid farewell to her home fans in 2004.

A summer full of athletics and good preparation ahead of Berlin 2018

The 76th edition of the ISTAF on 27 August, the last competition held inside the Olympic Stadium before the European Championships, met the expectations of the organisers and was widely considered a successful test event for next year.

The CEO of Berlin 2018, Frank Kowalski, said: “For us, this ISTAF has been a great opportunity to observe, learn and test procedures and processes in real life conditions“.

Furthermore, a great atmosphere and many world class performances across the afternoon demonstrated once again why Berlin‘s Olympic Stadium is regarded as one of the world’s best sporting arenas.

In addition to the ISTAF, another innovative athletics event completed the summer of athletics in Berlin on 2 September.

The annual team competition - “Berlin fliegt,“ or “Berlin flies” - was held once again in front of the Brandenburg Gate and in the heart of the city. World class athletes and champions from all over the world brought the sport close to the fans and proved once again that Berlin and athletics is a perfect fit.

So be ready and get your tickets for the European Athletics Championships Berlin 2018 here: berlin2018.info/en/tickets/