With one month to go until the Tokyo Olympic women’s 400m final, we are delighted that Australia’s 2000 Olympic 400m gold medallist Cathy Freeman has taken her place in the Museum of World Athletics (MOWA).
We are also pleased to announce that MOWA’s content is now available in Spanish as well as English and French. Visitors should select the flag icon on the top right of the screen as they enter the museum to choose their language.
Artefacts from nine world medallists
Freeman, the 1997 and 1999 world 400m champion, is one of nine World Athletics Championships medallists whose artefacts are entering MOWA today in glorious 360˚3D. Freeman’s team t-shirt and bib number from the 1999 World Championships in Seville have been on long-term loan to the World Athletics Heritage Collection since 2019.
The newest world champion among today’s additions is USA’s Noah Lyles. The 200m gold medallist from Doha generously donated not only his 2019 World Athletics Championships singlet and bib number but also his spectacular ‘stars and stripes’ team socks.
Lyles, who recently announced that he will be running sockless in future, is one of the favourites for Olympic 200m gold in Tokyo later this month.
Olympic champions Sebrle, Thorkildsen and Röhler
Joining Freeman and Lyles in MOWA’s World Athletics Championships Collection room are fellow world champions Roman Sebrle of the Czech Republic, Andreas Thorkildsen of Norway, and Germany’s Thomas Röhler.
The 2004 Olympic and 2007 World decathlon champion Sebrle is represented by one of his spikes (left shoe) from his world silver medal in Paris 2003.
Thorkildsen, the 2004 and 2008 Olympic champion and 2009 world champion in the javelin, has on display his t-shirt and bib numbers from his silver medal-winning performance in Daegu in 2011.
The exhibit from Röhler, who became Olympic javelin champion in Rio in 2016, is his singlet and numbers from his fourth-place finish at the 2017 World Championships in London which he generously donated in 2018.
Thorkildsen and Sebrle kindly donated their items to the collection a decade and more ago.
Wülbeck’s golden spike
Changes to the MOWA’s displays are immediately evident as soon as the visitor enters the World Athletics Championships Collection room.
Germany’s Willi Wüllbeck, the 1983 world 800m champion, has recently donated the spike (left shoe) which his aunt painted gold in celebration of his famous victory at the inaugural World Athletics Championships in Helsinki.
Tokyo gold medallist McColgan
The next oldest of the new artefacts to be added to MOWA is the pair of Tokyo’91 practice spikes worn by Liz McColgan. In 2019 they were very kindly donated to our collection by Britain’s 1991 World Championships gold medallist and 1992 Olympic silver medallist at 10,000m.
Loans from Martinez and Samuels
As today marks the introduction of the Spanish language into MOWA, we are grateful for the loan of a Spanish team singlet and a pair of spikes from 2007 world 800m bronze medallist Mayte Martinez, which have joined the displays.
Freeman is one of two Australian world champions entering MOWA today. Dani Samuels, who won the women’s discus at the 2009 World Athletics Championships in Berlin, kindly put her victorious singlet and numbers in the temporary trust of the World Athletics Heritage Collection back in 2019.
Chris Turner for World Athletics Heritage