Aug. 15, 2012
STOCKHOLM, Sweden - The incredible and impressive season that Chelsea Hayes is having just got a little bit longer. The six-time All-American standout from Louisiana Tech extended her stay in Europe after signing a professional contract with Nike.
A native of New Orleans who finished 16th at the Olympics in the long jump, Hayes signed with Nike immediately following the Olympic games and has traveled straight to the Swedish capital of Stockholm for her first professional competition Friday at the DN Galan meet. That meet is held at Stockholms Olympiastadium (Stockholm Olympic Stadium), site of the 1912 Olympic Games.
That meet is part of the Samsung Diamond League, an annual series of track and field meets held across the world. The international track and field season runs from May through September. While this year’s season is two-thirds finished, it allows Hayes to gain experience before her first full professional season.
Other meets as part of the Diamond League this year include the Athletissima in Lausanne, Switzerland on Aug. 23, the Aviva Birmingham Grand Prix in Birmingham, United Kingdon on Aug. 26, the Weltklasse Zurich in Zurich, Switzerland on Aug. 30 and the Blgacom Memorial Van Damme in Brussels, Belgium on Sept. 7. It is unknown at this time what other meets Hayes will compete in this year.
Hayes completed her career at Louisiana Tech with six All-America honors, 14 Western Athletic Conference championships and 18 All-WAC accolades throughout her collegiate career. She was one of three athletes with Louisiana Tech ties to compete in the 2012 Olympic Games.
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