World Athletics unveils global championship with record prize pot


World Athletics has announced a new biennial global championship meant to serve as a grand conclusion to the 2026 season, with a record $10 million prize pot on offer and Budapest as the inaugural host city.

The World Athletics Ultimate Championship will be held every two years, with gold medallists receiving $150,000 as part of what the sport's world governing body says is the richest prize pot ever in the sport.

The inaugural championships are scheduled for three evenings, September 11-13, with each session taking place in under three hours in a bid to offer a fast-paced event to captivate global television viewers.

The meet will feature between eight and 16 of the world's top-ranked athletes per discipline, with selections based primarily on world rankings. Some 400 athletes from about 70 countries are expected to compete.

"With only the best of the best on show and cutting straight to semi-finals and finals, we will create an immediate pressure to perform for athletes aiming to claim the title of the ultimate champion," World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said.

"Featuring athletics' biggest stars, it will be a must-watch global sports event and means track and field will host a major global championship in every single year, ensuring for the first time that athletics will enjoy a moment of maximum audience reach on an annual basis."

The traditional world athletics championships are also held every two years. Budapest hosted the 2023 event, with the next one in Tokyo in 2025.

More from Sports News