Professional Track & Field will have a domestic professional season with the newly created 2021 Pro Track Series.
The series is built around the established meets athletes have counted on for years but, with expanded event offerings and an overall series prize purse.
The series has set dates for the events with more events to possibly be added at a later date. Seven dates have been announced beginning with the Los Angeles Track Meet on May 14-15.
From Los Angeles, the series will move to Portland, Ore., for the Portland Track Festival on May 29.
Other dates and locations include:
Iowa High Performance on May 31 in Des Moines, Iowa; the Music City Carnival in Nashville, Tenn. On June 4-5; the Under Armour Sunset Tour in Southern California on July 10; the Under Armour Sunset Tour in Southern California on July 17 and the Ed Murphey Classic in Memphis, Tenn. On August 14.
According to Pro Track Series, talks between race directors during the pandemic ignited the idea to bring events together to form a formal professional season in the United States.
“The real goal is to keep the sport relevant by keeping the action right here in the U.S. Because there are few competitive opportunities here in America, pro athletes often have no choice but to go and race – and race when they are the fittest – on a different continent. Imagine if our basketball or baseball players routinely did that. It’s unthinkable, but that’s the way our sport has been for the last 25 years,” said Jesse Williams with Sound Running.
The series will bring athletes and fans together in the series and organizers said the focus will be on entertaining fans in attendance and those watching from home.
Initialize the series will focus on middle to long-distance events but offerings will be expanding so that each discipline is offered.
“We are excited to bring to track and field athletes and fans a collection of meets that will attract the country’s best talent,” said Craig Rice of Portland Track. “The Series will also focus on entertaining the fans attending and those watching at home.”