Monaco Diary: An intro to the Herculis Monaco meeting, by Stuart Weir


Stuart Weir is covering many of the Diamond League meetings that I have been unable to attend. His wry sense of humor (no longer attributed to his non existent Scottish heritage) keeps me smiling as I read his observations.

Fairfont hotel and F1 hairpin.JPGFairmont Hotel (Monaco) and F1 turn, photo by Stuart Weir

Here is his introduction to Monaco, one of my favorite meetings.

The Herculis Monaco (Diamond League)

This is my sixth Diamond League of the year but without question the most exciting location. Monaco is special for a number of reasons.

1 The location is unique. Rome, London, Oslo, Doha are all great cities but for sheer physical beauty Monaco takes some beating. The meet hotel, The Fairmont, seems to be all glass with spectacular views of the sea in two directions.

2 Monaco was visited by the ancient Greek divine hero, Hercules, and his legacy is to have a Diamond League named after him. None of this nonsense about calling the event after a sponsor.

3 Monaco is a tiny country with an area of three quarters of a square mile and a population of 37,000. In 2014 it was reported that 30% of the population were millionaires

4 Monaco is a constitutional monarchy, ruled by Prince Albert II and is also known as a principality. Prince Albert normally attends the event.

5 Monaco hosts a Formula 1 Grand Prix every year with the circuit made up of the narrow streets of the town. The Fairmont hotel lobby exhibits expensive jewellery which is on sale - and a wheel of the car with which Michael Schumacher won the World Championship! The famous hair-pin bend is just outside the hotel's front door.

6 The Fairmont is not the only meet hotel which has a car rental office in the lobby. It may be the only one which offers Ferrari, Aston Martin and Lamborghini!

7 It is definitely the only meet hotel with a casino off the lobby. In fact the media guide states: "The media centre is just opposite the entry to the casino".

8 Monaco always attracts a stellar field and has witnessed some incredible performances over the years. Who will ever forget Genzebe Dibaba's 3:50.07 world record 1500m run in 2015?

9 The track, Asbel Kiprop tells me, is the fastest in the world. And to prove it he has run PRs in the 800m and 1500m.

And Usain Bolt is running - look I managed to get to the last line before I mentioned him!

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