IAAF Announces 2017 World Championships Entry Standards — Which Ones Got Easier and Which Ones Got Harder?

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By LetsRun.com
November 30, 2016

As we enter the month of December, it’s time to look ahead to next year, and the biggest running event of 2017 will undoubtedly be the IAAF World Championships in London, which will be held August 4-13. Earlier this year, the IAAF released entry standards for the 10,000, marathon, walks and multi-events, and today the IAAF released the remaining standards. We’ve posted all the standards below:

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So how do those standards compare to the 2016 Olympics and 2015 Worlds? We’re glad you asked. We compared the marks from all three championships below:

Men

Red text denotes the standard is harder than in both 2015 and 2016
Green text denotes the standard is easier than in both 2015 and 2016

2017 Worlds 2016 Olympics 2015 Worlds
100 10.12 10.16 10.16
200 20.44 20.50 20.50
400 45.50 45.40 45.50
800 1:45.90 1:46.00 1:46.00
1500 3:36.00 (3:53.40 mile) 3:36.20 3:36.20 (3:53.30 mile)
5k 13:22.60 13:25.00 13:23.00
10k 27:45.00 28:00.00 27:45.00
Marathon 2:19:00 2:19:00 2:18:00
3k steeple 8:32.00 8:30.00 8:28.00
110 hurdles 13.48 13.47 13.47
400 hurdles 49.35 49.40 49.50
HJ 2.30m 2.29m 2.28m
PV 5.70m 5.70m 5.65m
LJ 8.15m 8.15m 8.15m
TJ 16.80m 16.85m 16.90m
SP 20.50m 20.50m 20.45m
Discus 65.00m 65.00m 65.00m
Hammer 76.00m 77.00m 76.00m
Javelin 83.00m 83.00m 82.00m
Decathlon 8100 8100 8075
20k race walk 1:24:00 1:24:00 1:25:00
50k race walk 4:06:00 4:06:00 4:06:00


Women

Red text denotes the standard is harder than in both 2015 and 2016
Green text denotes the standard is easier than in both 2015 and 2016

2017 Worlds 2016 Olympics 2015 Worlds
100 11.26 11.32 11.33
200 23.10 23.20 23.20
400 52.10 52.20 52.00
800 2:01.00 2:01.50 2:01.00
1500 4:07.50 (4:26.70 mile) 4:07.00 4:06.50 (4:25.20 mile)
5k 15:22.00 15:24.00 15:20.00
10k 32:15.00 32:15.00 32:00.00
Marathon 2:45:00 2:45:00 2:44:00
3k steeple 9:42.00 9:45.00 9:44.00
100 hurdles 12.98 13.00 13.00
400 hurdles 56.10 56.20 56.20
HJ 1.94m 1.93m 1.94m
PV 4.55m 4.50m 4.50m
LJ 6.75m 6.70m 6.70m
TJ 14.10m 14.15m 14.20m
SP 17.75m 17.75m 17.75m
Discus 61.20m 61.00m 61.00m
Hammer 71.00m 71.00m 70.00m
Javelin 61.40m 62.00m 61.00m
Heptathlon 6200 6200 6075
20k race walk 1:36:00 1:36:00 1:36:00

Some comments:

  • In total, in 14 events the standard is easier than it was in both 2015 and 2016 while in five events the standard is harder. Then there’s the men’s 1500, where the 1500 standard got harder but the mile standard (which can also be used to qualify at Worlds) actually got easier compared to 2015.
  • It’s important to remember how the qualifying procedure changes between World and Olympic years. At the 2016 Olympics, any mark achieved from May 1, 2015, to July 11, 2016, could be used to qualify (the window was slightly longer for the marathon, walks and multis). For Worlds, however, the window is shorter: all qualifying marks for the 2017 Worlds must be achieved between October 1, 2016, and July 23, 2017. The good news for American athletes is that, unlike in 2016, they’ll have a month to chase the standard after USAs as USAs will be held June 22-25.
  • It’s a little strange to us that so many events have a tougher standard in 2017 than 2016 as you’d think that, with more athletes wanting to compete at the Olympics than Worlds, the Olympic standard would have to be tougher. But perhaps the IAAF felt the field sizes were too large at the Olympics and wanted to trim them for Worlds next year.
  • One event that drew our eye was the 10,000 meters. David Monti asked us on Twitter whether we thought 27:45 and 32:15 were equivalent and after some analysis, we have concluded that they are not. Some stats:
    In 2016, 51 men ran 27:45 while 87 women ran 32:15.
    In 2015, 45 men ran 27:45 while 76 women ran 32:15.
    As percentages of the world record, 27:45 is 5.54% off the men’s WR (26:17.53) while 32:15 is 10.10% off the women’s WR (29:17.45).
    In Rio (where the standard was also 32:15), there were 37 women in the 10,000 field, 29 of whom were either lapped or dropped out. That was only slightly larger than the men’s field (34) but the men’s Olympic standard was 28:00; in 2015, when the Worlds standard was 27:45 (same as it is in 2017), there were only 27 men in the field. In the women’s race at 2015 Worlds (where the standard was 32:00), there were 25 women in the field.

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