- The International Olympic Committee has moved the location for the Olympic marathons.
- Instead of Tokyo, the women's and men's marathons will take place in Sapporo.
- The IOC said that the heat is too dangerous for distance marathon runners and those in the race walk.
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has relocated Olympic marathon events outside of Tokyo on Wednesday.
Tokyo is one of the hottest cities in the world during the summer. The entire city reaches about 90 degrees Fahrenheit while being very humid. These conditions can be very dangerous for marathon runners who are in the heat all day. As such, the IOC decided to move the Olympic marathon events to Sapporo.
“Heat was already taken into consideration when Tokyo presented its candidature in 2013, and since then the IOC and the Organizing Committee have continued to monitor the situation. The measures proposed today, and those already adopted, take the changing landscape into account as the IOC continues to put athlete health and performance at the heart of its decision-making,” said IOC officials.
Sapporo is located 500 miles north of Tokyo. The city is many degrees cooler during July and August and that makes the marathon event much safer. This will give marathon runners from colder countries a better chance to be competitive. On Bovada, cold countries like Russia only have +15000 odds of winning the most gold medals at the 2020 Olympics. But moving the marathons further north will give them a better chance to compete.
At the moment, the United States is predicted to win the most gold medals at the 2020 Olympics. Team USA has -3000 odds at top USA online sportsbooks to win the most gold medals. But that does not necessarily mean that they would win contests such as the marathon.
Typically, it is the African countries that win the marathon events. In the last two summer games, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Uganda have taken gold medals for the men’s and women’s marathon. However, odds boards do not believe that any of these countries will win the most gold medals.
It is possible that Japan could win gold at the marathon as well. In 2000 and 2004, Japanese women have won Olympic gold for the marathon. The last gold medal that Japan won for the men’s division was back in 1936. But Japan has won silver in the men’s contest in 1992. Since the 2020 Olympics will take place in Japan, sportsbooks are expecting them to win gold medals. Japan currently has +6600 odds to win the most gold medals during the 2020 Olympics.
In the end, the marathons were moved for the safety of the athletes. Now the chances that a runner is harmed by the heat have been significantly reduced. Now marathon runners need to prepare for the new marathon running conditions. The women’s marathon will take place on Sunday, August 2 in 2020. The men’s marathon will happen on Sunday, August 9 in 2020.