Scottish athletics exploring possibility of break from GB in European events

Laura Muir celebrates wining gold in the 1,500m at the European Championships in August. Picture: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images
Laura Muir celebrates wining gold in the 1,500m at the European Championships in August. Picture: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images
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Scottish Athletics is exploring the possibility of breaking away from Great Britain to compete independently in European events.

European Athletics has been contacted to ask whether it would be possible for the Scots - and therefore also England, Wales and Northern Ireland - to compete under their own flag.

The possible split for European competitions would not affect the current Great Britain set-up for the world championships and Olympics.

“We recently launched our new strategy document entitled ‘Building a Culture of Success’. Enshrined within that document is a principle to try and create more opportunities for Scottish athletes to compete as Scotland at European level,” said Scottish Athletics chief executive Mark Munro.

“Our chair, Ian Beattie, and I attended the European Athletics Convention in Lausanne recently and in writing to thank them, we asked if the possibility could be explored for Scotland - and the other Home nations England, Wales and Northern Ireland - to compete at the likes of the Euro Cross Country Champs (every year) and the European Champs (indoors and outdoors, every two years).

“This has been a topic of discussion by home nations and UK Athletics for the past 18 months or so.

“We do not envisage any change to the GB team for world championships and Olympics events in their two-year and four-year cycles.

“The landscape in sport is always changing and there are other models in British sport of Scotland competing at European level and then contributing athletes/players to GB teams for Olympics - so we will look at how that framework applies, too.”

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