The fifty-third year of the renewed P-T-S international athletic meeting will take place at the x-bionic® sphere sports complex in Šamorín on Friday 29 June 2018 provisionally from 19:00 and broadcast live by RTVS.

In this attractive over two-hour programme, Slovak viewers can look forward to seeing leading Slovak talent and two of the biggest names on our athletics scene: Olympic 50 km walk gold medallist Matej Tóth in the 3000 m walk, and Ján Volko – the fastest Slovak of all time – in the 100 m sprint.

“We want the main attraction to be leading Slovak athletes such as Matej Tóth and Ján Volko who rarely compete here. We also aim to offer fans two or three attractive world-names to inspire people to come to Šamorín,” noted President of the SAA and P-T-S Organisation Committee Peter Korčok regarding potential event attractions.

P-T-S’s honorary guest this year will be the legendary Cuban high jumper – and still world record holder – Javier Sotomayor. On 27 July 1993 in Salamanca, Spain he jumped 2.45 m outdoor, and on 4 March 1989 2.43 m in Budapest indoor. For P-T-S he returns to Slovakia after nearly three decades. At Bratislava’s Pasienky stadium he competed twice: in 1988 finishing second (2.32 m) to the Soviet Rudolf Povarnitsyn (2.36 m); and in 1989 he won with a then event record of 2.37 m, which a year later was surpassed by Romanian Sorin Matei’s 2.40 m.

Peter Korčok, President of the SAA and P-T-S Organisation Committee, said of Sotomayor’s attendance: “Bringing together former legends of athletics with today’s top performers highlights the importance of our event and our sport. We continue the tradition of inviting key figures from the history of P-T-S. The participation of Javier Sotomayor at the fifty-third P-T-S meeting is a great honour for us.”

For Ján Volko, P-T-S sports manager Alfons Juck has arranged two leading competitors from South Africa who hold sub-ten second personal records. Henricho Bruintjies (personal best 9.97 (wind-assisted 9.89), and this year 10.10) won silver at this year’s Commonwealth Games in the 100 m and 4 x 100 m relay. The second sprinter is Thando Roto (personal best 9.95), who won silver at the 2017 World Universiade in Taiwan in which Volko finished fifth.

The main programme will feature 12 disciplines – eight men’s (100 m, 1500 m, 400 m hurdles, high jump, triple jump, javelin, 3000 m walk, and hammer as part of the prestigious IAAF Hammer Throw Challenge series) and four women’s (400 m, 800 m, 100 m hurdles, long jump). This fifty-third P-T-S will also be a national programme with three premiere disciplines (hammer and 3000 m walk for women, 5000 m for men) and the national pinnacle Children’s P-T-S as part of the successful Children’s Athletics programme.

“We selected the main programme’s disciplines to give our performers a good start in international competition at an acceptable performance level,” explained head SAA trainer Martin Pupiš. “We should see most of our leading athletes in Šamorín – 800m runner Jozef Repčík, hurdler Martin Kučera, high jumpers Matúš Bubeník and Lukáš Beer, triple jumper Tomáš Veszelka, hammer thrower Marcel Lomnický, javelin thrower Patrik Žeňúch, walker Matej Tóth, 400 m runners Alexandra Bezeková and Iveta Putalová, 800 m runners Gabriela Gajanová and Alexandra Štuková, and in the Eva Šuranová Memorial race Jana Velďáková and versatile Lucia Vadlejch go head-to-head with international star and race walker Mária Katerinka Czaková.”

The budget for the fifty-third P-T-S meeting is approximately EUR 200 000, and EUR 75 000 has been set aside for attendance fees, travel costs and bonuses for the best. The organisers are offering cash bonuses for the first five finishers in each discipline, and in the men’s hammer – being part of the IAAF series, the first eight will receive bonuses.