For the last week, our bedtime reading has been the entry lists for the Beijing World Championships. The deranged dreams that followed took place in a statistic-heavy, athlete-inspired parallel universe. Who needs Kubla Khan when you’ve got SPIKES Beijing 2015 Athlete Land?

Where in the world?

Come with us on a magical journey and take in the unique sites of SPIKES Beijing 2015 Athlete Land. The tour begins in JORDAN Clarke (US shot putter), before hitting the European cities of MILAN Ristic (Serbian 110m hurdler), SOFIA Ennaoui (Polish 1500m runner) and Collis BIRMINGHAM (Australian 5000m runner). If you're feeling adventurous, take a trip to Texas for a stop in Harold HOUSTON (Bermudan 200m sprinter), or head over to the New Zealand capital city of WELLINGTON Zaza (Liberian sprint hurdler).

Tour guides are a global bunch, featuring two GERMANs – Chiaraviglio and Lauro (coincidentally both from Argentina) – Johnny DUTCH (US 400m hurdler), Mark ENGLISH (Irish 800m runner) and distance runner Jesus ESPANA, proudly flying the flag for, er, Spain.

Water, water, everywhere

Life would not exist without water, and Athlete Land has a plentiful supply. The Natan RIVERa (El Salvador pole vault) flows down from the mountains and into the Heidi SEE (Australian middle-distance runner), taking in British high jump duo Morgan LAKE and Isobel POOLey along the way. And don't worry: those bodies of water are in total control thanks to Jamaican sprinter Warren WEIR.

Something like a meteorological phenomena

No world is complete without a dash of colour, and Athlete Land has its very own rainbow.

It features four BROWNS (well, actually three and one Braun, which is German for brown) in the form of US discus thrower Rodney, Canadian sprinter Aaron, Bahamian one-lap legend Chris and Dutch decathlete Pieter. Lovely GREEN tones are provided by 400m hurdles duo Jack and Leford, from the GB and Jamaica. Meanwhile, Leford’s countryman and fellow one-lap hurdler Annsert WHYTE is bringing his colour of clinical clarity.

Pinks come in the form of Brazilian triple jumper Jean-Cassimiro ROSA, Italian shot putter Chiara ROSA and New Zealand steeplechaser ROSA Flanagan. Red comes courtesy of Eugenio ROSSI, a high jumper from San Marino. Can you sing that rainbow?

Jack Green ()

Red and yellow and pink and blue, orange and purple and Jack Green

Up on the mountain for the rest of my life

You want wildlife? Athlete Land has got it.

Above ground there's Burkino Faso heptathlete Marthe KOALA, US 200m sprinter BEE Jay Lee and Mongolian marathon man Ser-od BAT-Ochir. The aquarium includes Sri Lankan marathon runner Anuradha CooRAY and Philippines 400m hurdler Eric CRAYfish.

We are also very proud of the Kate AVERY (GB 10,000m athlete), which houses Barbados sprint hurdler Greggmar SWIFT and Australian javelin thrower Hamish PEACOCK.

Flowers are also abound thanks to Samoan discus thrower Alex ROSE and Canadian sprinter Kimberly HYACINTHE. If you're out for a frolic in the flora and/or fauna, just watch out for Canadian race walker Benjamin THORNE.

Art attack

When inclement weather hits, head over to the Athlete Land gallery, which features some top class Arnaud ART (as in Belgian pole vaulter) and Shanice CRAFT (German discus thrower). It also houses a brilliant cafe, where hot refreshments will be served by Ecuadorian race walker Mauricio ArTEAga.

Snack and field

Hungry? Don't worry. The fish special is a duo of Christina and Robert HERING (German 800m and 100m athletes), and if you want something more substantial then we recommend the Khrystyna STUY (Ukrainian 200m sprinter). For those seeking a lighter option, just turn to her team-mate Olga SALADukha, the 2011 world triple jumper champion.

From the cheeseboard, try Vikas GOWDA (Indian discus thrower). There's also an outstanding assortment of fruit, including German pole vaulter Carlo PAECH, Dutch pole vaulter Femke PLUIM, French sprinter Maroussia PARE and British long jumper Daniel BRAMBLE. Don't forget the dried fruit option: Canadian hammer thrower SULTANA Frizell. Great with cereal.

Jeff Porter ()

Fancy a pint of porter, Jeff?

Thirsty work

The range of drinks available in Athlete Land is simply outstanding. Get your morning pick-me-up with Ivory Coast's 100m sprinter Hua Wilfried KOFFI, or US race walker Maria Michta-COFFEY, if you prefer. Consult Japanese long jumper Yohei SUGAI for the sweeteners.

If you fancy a stiffer tipple then try some of Vanuatu men’s 100m sprinter Wormel BRANDY Mento, or Dutch sprinter Churandy MARTINA (shaken or stirred). US steeplechaser Evan JAGER bomb will be doing the rounds with shots.

Wine options are limited, though the John (Blue) NUNN is a great vintage, as the veteran US race walker will attest. If you fancy a dark beer we recommend Jeff PORTER or his wife Tiffany PORTER (the sprint hurdles duo from the US and GB), while the more adventurous drinker should try a glass of US distance runner Hassan MEAD (a kind of a honey wine, google it).

Irish 400m hurdler Thomas BARR will be serving all night. Please tip generously.


Facial furniture is the trendy choice for the modern man, and you will be delighted to hear Athlete Land is more de rigueur than a Shoreditch coffee roasters thanks to TASHI Dendup (100m sprinter from Bhutan) and Jessica BEARD (US 400m runner). If you get sick of the look, don’t worry, Romanian one-lapper Bianca RAZOR is on hand to fix any hirsute horror show.

Jessica Beard ()

Jessica knows

Employment figures

Athlete Land's buoyant economy means there are no shortage of jobs. We have two BARBERS – Canadian pole vaulter Shawn and Kiwi race walker Alana, who are assisted by their able apprentices, Czech high jumper Jaroslav Baba and Indian steeplechaser Lalita Shivaji Barbar.

There are three MILLERS – Bahamian one-lap duo Shaunae and Ramon, and British hammer thrower Nick – and a couple of GARDENERS – US sprinter English and Bahamian one-lapper Steve GARDINER. Down at the bustling docks you'll find German sprinter Verena SAILER, Canadian race walker Rachel SEAMAN and Aussie marathoner Sinead DIVER.

Good to your earhole

The house band is really quite special, featuring Swedish discus thrower AXEL (Rose) Harstedt and Ethiopian marathoner Berhanu LEMI (of Motorhead fame) on vocals, Brazilian marathoner Edmilson SANTANA on lead guitar and Austrian sprint hurdler BEATe Schrott banging the drums.

For the classical music fan there is WAGNER Domingos, the Brazilian hammer thrower, changing the pace. There is also the resident campanologists, Panamanian steeplechaser Rolanda BELL and German 5000m runner Richard RINGER.


So that is all from SPIKES Beijing 2015 Athlete Land. All is leaves us to say is Alberth BRAVO for our efforts. He’s a Venezuelan 400m runner, btw.