WELCOME TO MADRID
This meeting, organized by the Royal Spanish Athletics Federation with the support of the Madrid city council, is the only meeting in Spain that is in the IAAF calendar and will be one of the last sporting events which will be held in the city before the election of the 2016 Olympic venue, which will be celebrated next 2nd October in Copenhagen (Denmark). We have to remind that Madrid is candidate for the major sports competition along with Chicago, Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo.
The origin of the meeting date back to 1979, and in the previous 26 editions we have been able to see some of the best athletes in the world of the last three decades like Carl Lewis, Sebastian Coe, Said Aouita or Yelena Isinbayeva. This meeting was also the scenery of an historic happing when American Edwin Moses lost with his compatriot Danny Harris in the 400 metres hurdles event in 1987 after nine years, nine months and nine days of invincibility.
It will be a magnificent opportunity in order that this city, one of the most active and encouraged metropolis Europeans and with a rich social and cultural life, renews his commitment with this sport, a relation that comes of long ago. It is necessary to remember that Madrid already organized in 1962 the second edition of the Iberoamerican Games and that since then it has sheltered some of the most important competitions of our sport, as the European Indoor Games of 1968, European Indoor Championships in 1986 and 2005 or the World Cup in 2002.
Madrid is the capital and largest city of Spain. It is the third-most populous municipality in the European Union after Greater London and Berlin, and its metropolitan area is the third-most populous in the European Union after Paris and London. The city is located on the river Manzanares in the centre of both the country and the Community of Madrid (which comprises the city of Madrid, its conurbation and extended suburbs and villages); this community is bordered by the autonomous communities of Castile and León and Castile-La Mancha. As the capital city of Spain, seat of government, and residence of the Spanish monarch, Madrid is also the political centre of Spain.
The population of the city is roughly 3.3 million (as of December 2009). The entire population of the Madrid metropolitan area (urban area and suburbs) is calculated to be 6.386.932. The city spans a total of 698 km² (234 sq mi).
The region of Madrid features the rare Continental Mediterranean climate with cool winters due to altitude, including sporadic snowfalls and minimum temperatures often below 0 °C (32 °F). Summer tends to be hot with temperatures that consistently surpass 30 °C (86 °F) in July and that can rarely reach 40 °C (104 °F). Due to Madrid's altitude and dry climate, nightly temperatures tend to be cooler, leading to a lower average in the summer months.