German runners win claim against cameras showing intimate angles

Images of female sprinters settling into their starting blocks at the world track and field championships in Qatar are being restricted after two German runners took issue with the intimate close-ups.

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has agreed to only show shots of runners crouched over their starting blocks moments before the starting pistol is fired in races at the World Athletics Championships.

Gina Lückenkemper and Tatjana Pinto said they had not been consulted about the so-called "Block Cam" mini-camera that had been placed in the starting blocks prior to their 100-meter races, the BBC reported.

Gina Lueckenkemper of Germany celebrates winning the Silver medal in the 100 meters at the 2018 European Athletics Championships in Berlin. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Gina Lueckenkemper of Germany celebrates winning the Silver medal in the 100 meters at the 2018 European Athletics Championships in Berlin. (Photo by Michael Steele/Getty Images)

"I find it unpleasant stepping over these cameras as I get into the blocks wearing these scanty clothes," Luckenkemper said.

Germany's athletics association, the DLV, raised the runners' complaint with the IAAF.

The IAAF announced the addition of the cameras on Sept. 9, saying they would "provide innovative angles on the competition." The organization said two small cameras would be installed in each starting block for the 100-meter and sprint hurdles races.

The idea came from IAAF production crews who felt viewers were missing a "crucial moment of the drama" by not being able to see an athlete's face at the start of races.

Tatjana Pinto reacts after finishing second in her women's 200 meters heat on Monday at the World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar. REUTERS/Aleksandra Szmigiel

Tatjana Pinto reacts after finishing second in her women's 200 meters heat on Monday at the World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar. REUTERS/Aleksandra Szmigiel

“Traditional camera positions only showed the top or side of their heads as they took their marks,’’ explained IAAF Director of Broadcast James Lord. “The new cameras within the blocks will capture that intense moment just before a race."

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Video footage from the cameras will be deleted daily under an agreement with the runners.

Lückenkemper and Pinto were eliminated from their semi-final races. Jamaica's Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce won the 100-meter final Sunday.