Oceania Athletics is pleased to announce that the Mackay Regional Council will be the major sponsor and host of the 2022 Oceania Athletics Championships.
The Oceania Athletics Championships – the pinnacle event in athletics within the Oceania Area – will see the best athletes in Oceania head to Mackay from June 7 to 11, 2022.
Mackay Regional Council Mayor, Greg Williamson, said having Mackay as the host city in 2022 was an amazing opportunity and a testament to the world-class nature of the Mackay Aquatic and Recreation Complex (ARC).
He said the Mackay Regional Council, through its Events Attraction Program, had worked hard to secure the event, which was expected to generate 11,725 bed nights and result in a $2.5 million dollar stimulus to the region.
“To be able to boast facilities that put us on an even playing field with the capital cities of the Oceania region is a huge coup for Mackay,” Mayor Williamson said.
“We look forward to welcoming athletes from across the Pacific and hope they take the time to enjoy some of our region’s must-do activities, like see a platypus at Eungella, meet the Cape Hillsborough wallabies on the beach at sunrise, or simply enjoy a meal in our city centre,” he said.
The 2022 edition of the Championships aims to maximise and highlight athletes’ performances in a sustainable way.
The Championships will take a new and exciting format and will be the first Area Championships to be inclusive of all age groups and abilities.
The Senior, U20 and U18 Championships will take place in their traditional format, with the Area Championships in 2022 an important steppingstone for athletes wanting to compete at World Championships, both in Eugene (Senior) and Cali (Under 20) later in the year. For the Senior Champions, it would mean an automatic qualification to the World Championships in 2022, providing being selected by their national federation.
The introduction of an Under 16 competition, into the Area Championships, is seen as an exciting development for Oceania Athletics. With school athletics being so strong throughout the region, with competitions such as the CocaCola Games, Colgate Games and Australian All Schools, seen as significant within their own member federations. The U16 competition, will take the format of teams competition, with teams able to enter through, clubs or schools, regions, states or member federations.
Oceania Athletics has always had a strong relationship with Masters Athletics, and the introduction of a full range of Master’s events to be contested will be a first for Oceania Athletics and the Oceania Masters Athletics Association. The event will also play host to the Queensland Masters Athletics Championships.
To be an all-inclusive event, Oceania Athletics has led the way with the introduction of Para-events within the Area Championships program. For the first time, a full program of events will be offered throughout the Championships. Without a World Para Championships occurring in 2022, the Oceania Championships will serve as an important stepping stone in the lead up to Paris 2024.
Oceania Athletics President, Robin Sapong-Eugenio, is looking forward to the Championships in Mackay.
“Mackay has proven itself to host major sporting events – including athletics competitions – over the past few years, and we are pleased to be working with the Mackay Regional Council as the major partner and sponsor of the Championships.
“With COVID affecting travel throughout the region over the past two years, this will be the first opportunity that the Oceania family will be together in the flesh since 2019.
“The Championships is going to be the most inclusive that Oceania Athletics has ever held, with athletes of all ages and abilities heading to Mackay to compete.
“We can’t wait to see everyone in Mackay for the Oceania Area Athletics Championships.”
This will be the seventh time the Oceania Athletics Championships has been hosted in North Queensland, and the first time in Mackay. The Mackay facility – built in 2019 – hosted the 2019 Oceania Masters Athletics Championships, and has gone on to host the 2020 North Queensland Championships. The facility was a beneficiary of the 2018 Commonwealth Games, with most of their equipment received from the Games.
Mackay becomes the sixth city to host both the Oceania Masters and the Oceania Championships, joining Suva, Townsville, Papeete, Apia, and Christchurch.
Previous Oceania Athletics Championships Venues
1990 Suva, Fiji
1994 Auckland, New Zealand
1996 Townsville, Australia
1998 Nuku’alofa, Tonga
2000 Adelaide, Australia
2002 Christchurch, New Zealand
2004 Townsville, Australia
2006 Apia, Samoa
2008 Saipan, Northern Marianas
2010 Cairns, Australia
2013 Papeete, French Polynesia
2015 Cairns, Australia
2017 Suva, Fiji
2019 Townsville, Australia
2022 Mackay, Australia