Busa Launch British University Championships

An
exciting new concept for British sport has been unveiled. The British
University Championships is a brand new major sporting festival which will
bring together 6500 university students at the

UK’s biggest annual multi-sport
event.

The new
four-day championship, which will act as a culmination of a year-round program
of sport, will feature 22 sports across a combination of Team Finals and
Individual Championships.

The city
of

Sheffield
has won the right to host the British University Championships for the next
three years – with the first major event taking place between 13th–16th March
2008.

The aim of
the British University Championships is to raise the level and profile of
student sport from participation through to elite competition, creating a
legacy of experience for students – both participants and spectators – and will
be designed to replicate the feel of major championship event.

John
Inverdale, President of BUSA (British University Sports Association) said:

“This is a
great example of BUSA developing talent ahead of the Olympic and Paralympic
Games in 2012 and to raise the level of competition. The British University Championships
will provide the perfect platform for students to gain the invaluable
experience of competing in a major competition”.

BUSA
Chairman Phil Attwell said:

“The
quality of student sport is high and getting higher. The British University
Championships will provide an excellent showcase for student sport in a city
which is fast becoming

England’s
sporting capital.”

Sheffield
has been selected as the host city due to its variety of
first-class sporting facilities.

Venues to
be utilized include Don Valley Stadium, Ponds Forge ISC and the EIS Sheffield
(English Institute of Sport).

Councilor
Jan Wilson, Leader of
Sheffield City Council
said:

“Yet again

Sheffield has attracted a major sporting event
to the city. We continue to show our credentials as a first–class sporting city
attracting major events year on year. It shows how
Sheffield
has the facilities and capabilities to hold an event of this size. There will
be a real focus of attention not only our world class venues but also the
regeneration projects, key to
Sheffield being
a destination city.”

Minister for Sport and Sheffield Central MP Richard Caborn said:

“The British University Championships will give talented young athletes the
opportunity to compete in a set-up similar to the Olympic Games. This can only
help our ambitions for 2012 as we look to find potential Olympians that can
bring medal success for

Great
Britain.

“I am pleased that Sheffield, with its world class sporting facilities – such
as the English Institute of Sport – and two world class Universities, has been
chosen to be the inaugural host city.

“Putting on events such as this was the vision behind the transformation of the
city’s sporting landscape ahead of the World Student Games in 1991. I am
sure the
Sheffield people will show the
British University Games great support.”

Leon Taylor, Olympic silver medalist and part-time ‘Business and Finance’
student at

Sheffield

Hallam
University
said:

“This
exciting new concept will help develop thousands of young athletes across the
country, providing them with good competition. I’m proud that
Sheffield
will be hosting this new event.”

Julia
Beckett, Commonwealth silver medalist and full-time ‘Sport and Exercise
Science’ student at

Loughborough

University said:

“Many

Britain’s top
swimmers are studying at University, so it will be a great opportunity to
showcase the potential in British swimming amongst fellow students and
competitors.”

Zara Hohn,
Sheffield-born 100m hurdle talented young athlete said:

“I hope to
attend university in the next 18 months and the British University
Championships can only help me develop as an athlete. Competing at a major
multi-sport games or championships can be really intimidating, so having such a
major event annually will really help.”

Richard
Jones, Chief Executive of ‘Yorkshire South’ Tourism said:

“We are
delighted to be the host of the British University Championships in 2008 and we
look forward to welcoming the competitors, their families and supporters to the
Yorkshire South region to what promises to be an exciting event. We
consider this event to highlight the city of

Sheffield and the sub region’s sporting
facilities and capabilities of hosting large, prestigious events”.

Neil
Jenkinson, Head of Culture and Major Events at Yorkshire Forward said:

“The BUSA
games will bring 6500 sporting students to our region – many of whom could be
the future athletes to represent us at the 2012 Olympic Games.

“Bringing
the Games to
Sheffield will further cement the
city’s reputation as a first-class centre for sports and sporting excellence.”