Qatari organisers marked the one-year countdown to their International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World Championships in Doha today by launching the event logo, branding and ticket options, having successfully trialled a state-of-the-art cooling system at the host venue of the Khalifa International Stadium.
To mark the occasion the doors were opened to the Stadium in Aspire Zone for special guests and media, including Qatar's Asian Games 400 metres hurdles champion Abderrahman Samba, along with officials and sponsors.
"All attendees enjoyed a first-hand experience of the unique pink track and weather conditions the innovative cooling system will offer athletes and fans," said a Doha 2019 local Organising Committee release.
"Track temperatures were set to a pleasant 24-26 degrees celsius courtesy of the revolutionary in-stadium air-conditioning technology, which will guarantee optimal conditions for athletes and fans alike while also being sustainable.
"The Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS) certified stadium which will also host 2022 FIFA World Cup matches, is ready to play host to the Asian Athletics Championships in April 2019, the official test event for the IAAF World Athletics Championships later in the year."
The open day concluded a four-day visit for IAAF officials, and Council member Geoff Gardner, who led a delegation including team leaders and coaches from 30 nations, told The Stadium Business: "I don't know if the rest of the world really believed this was possible but it's an amazing system and it shows that our championships can be conducted here in a good environment for the athletes.
These are the air vents for Khalifa Stadium’s revolutionary air-con system, which will keep athletes and fans comfortable at #WCHDoha2019. You won’t believe it unless you see it. pic.twitter.com/LGAgBObohs— Nicole Jeffery (@nicolejeffery) September 27, 2018
"There are always challenges preparing for a major event like this but if the Doha LOC rises to all those challenges as it has to this one, then our event is in safe hands."
The ticketing programme which was unveiled will offer athletics fans a range of options including seats in traditional Arab cushioned Majlis or finish line positions.
Taster option tickets will be on offer priced at €14 (£12/$16).
Fans are being invited to register their interest in tickets here to ensure they receive information, alerts and reminders for when they go on sale in November.
IAAF vice president Dahlan Al Hamad, director general of the Championships, said as he stood on the finish line: "Today is a very important day in our readiness preparations.
"Qatar is a young and ambitious nation.
"We hope that seeing is believing and as you can see today we are ready to deliver upon our promises, from our stadium to our airport, our infrastructure to accommodation and our world-famous hospitality.
"Everything is in place including a growing excitement and energy among the local community.
"In hosting the first ever IAAF World Athletics Championships in the Middle East, we have a shared vision and commitment in partnering with the IAAF, to grow participation of this wonderful sport across Qatar, the region and the world.
"To have such an ambition requires innovative, creative and bold thinking.
"That is why an exciting new schedule exists with new formats.
"That's why this stadium has cooling technology and why we want our young athletes and our local community to experience it live for themselves.
"That's why we will introduce a midnight marathon.
"All these developments take imagination but stem from a single goal of enhancing athletics worldwide."
Commenting on one year to go, IAAF President Sebastian Coe said: "Qatar has been hosting official IAAF events for over 21 years and in the Organising Committee we have a trusted partner who is committed to delivering a World Athletics Championship which makes a real difference to the world of athletics.
"With a year to go it is important the foundations are in place, so the final year can be spent testing facilities, systems and services.
"This is where we are now and there is a clear plan for testing.
"The fact that this is our first Championship in the Middle East is hugely exciting.
"It means we can and should do things differently and provides an opportunity to reconsider what is possible in terms of new formats to appeal to spectators in the stadium or viewers around the world.
"We are encouraged by what we have seen over this last week and look forward to working with athletes, member federations and partners to deliver an outstanding World Athletics Championships one year from today."
Samba added: "My heart is already racing, and the adrenaline is pumping just by standing on the track.
"To compete in a stadium of this significance in front of my family and nation will be amongst the greatest moments of my career."
By committing to connect the world of athletics, Doha is determined to further accelerate the growth of women's track and field across the region by changing perceptions.
The logo for the Championships was revealed for the first time at the event, and is the creation of a local, all-female branding team.
Commenting on the opportunity for women, Sheikha Asma Al Thani, director of marketing and communications for Doha 2019, said: "Looking around, it is easy to see that a lot has been built.
"But at the same time a lot of barriers and perceptions of Arab women in sport need changing.
"Definite progress has been made with new role models emerging all the time, but these invisible barriers still exist.
"Every woman who participates in the first IAAF World Athletics Championship hosted in the Middle East can inspire change and encourage more girls to participate in sport at any level or consider a career trackside in branding, marketing or more."
The dates for the 2019 Worlds have been set to avoid the extreme heat of the Qatari summer.
Doha traditionally hosts its round of the IAAF Diamond League in May and the 2019 Worlds will mark by far the latest time of year that any of its 16 editions will have been held.