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11 July 2015 | in Universiade 2015, Summer Universiade, Athletics

Rain no Barrier for Athletes, Media & Spectators


GWANGJU - There comes a time at every event where the weather decides to change from sunny to very and persistently wet.

Athletics races are not spared, as the rain absolutely tumbled down on Saturday afternoon at the Gwangju World Cup Stadium.  Even so, the inclement conditions have not stopped all the competition.  Archery continued on through the elements, and the men’s 20 kilometre walk was akin to a slippery dip on the road.

It did not stop media either.  Photographers decked out in white rain jackets and heavy camera coats lined the edges of the tracks at the stadium to catch glimpses between delays.  As the Universiade tracks rapidly to a close, the all-important last photos and moments captured bring out the eager media.

To be able to get the right picture, or story, one must brave whatever is thrown at them.  Usually the end result is soaked clothes and dripping equipment, but no matter what the photographers stay out there for up to several hours capturing the action.

Korea’s monsoon season has brought with it weather not seen in many other places during summer.  And it is not just the media that have to deal with it; athletes face slippery tracks and very tricky situations potentially throwing hammers, discus and the javelin.

The men’s pole vault was delayed on Saturday due to water jamming the pole plant area of the runway.  Not to be deterred, 15 minutes later the action was on again, much to the delight of the crowd.

In the hammer throw circle, and an extremely narrow area in which to release, the competitors needed to find a way to overcome the wet.  However, athletes know to be ready for these conditions all around the world; the only thing that stops them in Gwangju is the waiting until they can restart.


Davis Harrigan (AUS), FISU Young Reporter