Posted on 03/11/2011
The World Rowing Junior Championships were held at Royal Holloway this summer, with facilities and transport arrangements tested ahead of the London 2012 Games.
The Championships got off to a belting start during the opening ceremony at Royal Holloway, University of London on 2 August, as entertainers sang West End show-pleasers and popular hits.
Representatives from the 48 competing countries marched down the South Quad steps waving their national flags as the countries were introduced to mark the official opening of the event.
Olympic gold medallist and World Rowing Junior Championship chairman Ben Hunt-Davis and FISA treasurer Mike Williams addressed the crowds of spectators in the South Quad, talking of the importance that the Championships played in testing facilities ahead of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The event acted as a test for the rowing regatta at the London 2012 Olympic Games, with the accommodation, transport and general facilities all under scrutiny. The rowers stayed in campus accommodation at Royal Holloway and were transported to Dorney Lake, in Eton, where the Championships were held, just as the Olympic athletes will at next year’s London 2012 Games.
Mike Williams said: “It’s something of a tradition that we go a year before the Games and hold the Championships to test the transport and accommodation qualities. This is the best accommodation you could have received and I hope that by the end of the Championships you will see why the Olympic rowers will be staying here.”
Addressing the athletes, Ben Hunt-Davis added: “I hope that we will provide the facilities that ensure you have everything that you need. I hope that you enjoy racing and you race hard. Good luck!”