Creative Technology Brings Exciting Dynamics at IAAF World Athletics Championships

Marketing | November 11, 2019 | Press Release

Creative Technology Khalifa International Stadium, Doha

The IAAF World Athletics Championships made history when it took its tournament to the Middle East for the first time since the inaugural event in 1983. The 10-day competition saw nearly 2000 athletes from 209 countries compete. The 17th edition of the event took place at the Khalifa International Stadium in Doha.

For 2019 a multitude of technical innovations were introduced to the event including light shows, new camera angles and increased engagement with athletes. Florian Weber, IAAF Event Presentation Manager, was responsible for the athletics presentation concept. Creative Technology (CT) delivered a projected track-athlete introduction that covered the entire running track, entertainment lighting, LED athlete entrances for both track and field positions, and an LED medal ceremony podium on top of the usual Event Presentation control and stadium relay screens. 

Florian Weber commissioned CT to deliver a VR model of the Khalifa Stadium featuring athletics apparatus, production overlay, and the proposed LED screens and track projection. CT supplied over 500sqm of curveable 4.8mm LED screens, eight mobile battery-powered LED Monoliths, over 80 lighting fixtures, communication systems, 50 duplex hand-portable radios, cameras and switching and used over 100 21K and 31k laser projectors to project custom content across the entire running track.

Multiple feeds and an 8-channel recorder linked on a 10GB network to multiple NAS drives were supplied to three Editors which enabled them to select and record the action from all the available camera feeds within the venue. In addition to this, the editing team had access to all the broadcast EVS content collected on-site via IPD Director, including that of our colleagues at NEP Broadcast.

The stadium control system based around two Barco Encore switchers controlled the content to every display, eight Watchout media servers providing 32 HD outputs provided the content playback to the LED. These were also capturing 4K live data from Mercury Sports to display the digital flags and athlete names for the medal ceremony.

The projection mapping and content playback were handled by six Photon media servers. Controlling the feed to the stadium PA system CT supplied a Yamaha CL5 desk, and Sigma Spot-on for audio playback.

For the broadcast rights holders, CT provided 150 hand-portable radios with 18 duplex talkback channels linked from the stadium via audio over fiber solution. 24 channels of MADI delivered over Mediornet were used to make four-wire connections between event presentation and the broadcast compound.

Another 36 radios, four channels of Helixnet talkback and Glensound commentary units were provided at the Corniche for the Event Production of the road racing events, the system also featured motorbike communications and audio channel.

Doha 2019 saw the debut of the first-midnight marathon taking place along Doha’s corniche with the iconic skyline as a backdrop. CT was contracted to supply video and audio solutions for the marathon and walks along the corniche with further audio and comms for the spectator grandstands. CT was also responsible for distributing all live signals and content to the LED screens that ran along the finish line. 

Irum Ashraf, Middle East General Manager, Creative Technology Said, “Our local office fully supported the wider Creative Technology team with both human and technical resources. Having been part of several Athletic meetings held in Doha over the last year, CT’s local office played a pivotal role in providing knowledge of the local market, which helped with our successful delivery. It’s a very exciting time for Sport in Qatar right now and having a base here puts us in a prime position to be involved in such great events in the future.”

Steve Purkess, Head of Sport, Creative Technology, “Working towards the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Doha has been an amazing journey, delivering presentation techniques at a scale more commonly seen in opening ceremonies into live athletics gave us a unique challenge. It has been a privilege for CT to play a part in delivering this game-changing approach to event presentation.”


CT delivered a projected track-athlete introduction that covered the entire running track, entertainment lighting, LED athlete entrances for both track and field position.

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