University of Chichester hailed in 2012 Olympics report

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The University of Chichester’s contribution to this summer’s Olympic and Paralympic Games has been acknowledged in a national report endorsed by Lord Coe.

The institution has a well-established Olympic heritage dating back to the 1988 Seoul Games, and is involved in the training and preparation of Olympic athletes ahead of London 2012.

The report – Olympic and Paralympic Games: The Impact of Universities – showcases the diverse contribution higher education is making to the 2012 Games in numerous fields.

The University’s role in the West Sussex Partnership for the 2012 Games is highlighted.

The group will welcome teams from Barbados, Grenada, the Bahamas, Dominica and Finland to the county for pre-Games training camps. Teams will be able to access sports science support from the Chichester campus.

The report highlights one expert based at the university who has used his expertise to support Olympic and Paralympic athletes.

Sports physiologist Dr Marcus Smith attended the Seoul and Barcelona Olympics as part of the GB boxing set-up and played a central role in the preparation of amateur boxers for the Atlanta, Sydney and Athens Games.

Professor Clive Behagg, vice-chancellor of the University of Chichester, said: “While I’m delighted our expertise in sport has been recognised, this report only tells part of our story.

“Every GB sailing medal-winner for the past four Olympics has undertaken part of their training here, and we continue to prepare sailors for London 2012 through work funded by the RYA. All the squad come to Chichester for fitness assessments and general sports science input.

“We’re also going to be cheering on one of our own this summer. Ben Quilter is studying for his masters in sport and exercise physiology. He is a double world judo champion and is the No1 seed going into the Paralympic Games in his class.”

Dr Sarah Gilroy, deputy vice-chancellor (academic) and former England hockey coach, added: “Those selected for Team GB this summer prove we are a successful breeding ground.

“Saskia Clark, who graduated in 2003, is in the Skandia Team GB sailing team in the women’s 470 class, while teacher training graduate Emma Wiggs will be captaining the GB women’s sitting volleyball team in the Paralympics.”

Lord Coe, who chairs the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games, said: “Universities have been essential to London 2012 through the provision of expertise, facilities, volunteers and many medal hopefuls.”

n Six athletes from the University of Chichester had the honour of being among the first to compete in the Olympic Stadium.

The British Universities and Colleges Sport (BUCS) Visa outdoor athletics championships were a test event for the stadium.

Discus and hammer thrower Neil Fitzpatrick, triple jumper Patrick Apantaku, 800m runner Corin Reynolds Chloe Campbell (400m), Aaron Dunne (high jump) and Olly Stacey (100m/200m) were all involved.