High praise for Surrey Sports Park as Singapore are Surrey bound
14 April 2011
Pictured: Paul Blanchard, Surrey Sports Park CEO and Bob Gambardella, Singapore Sports Council Chief of Sports Development
Team Singapore have confirmed that they will train at Surrey Sports Park ahead of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic games.
Top Singaporean athletes including reigning Olympic table tennis silver medallists Feng Tianwei, Li Jiawei, Wang Yuegu, Sun Beibei and Yu Mengyu will head to the Guildford-based facility for two pre-games training camps, in July this year and July 2012.
Organised by the Singapore Sports Council (SSC) and Surrey Sports Park, the camps will help Singapore’s Olympic hopefuls experience and acclimatise themselves to London's weather before the 2012 Games, which will be held in London from July 27 to Aug 12.
The agreement will also see Singapore’s shooting athletes train at Bisley’s National Shooting Centre.
Seb Coe, Chair of the London 2012 Organising Committee said, "It's great news that the Singapore National Olympic Council has decided to send their athletes to train in the UK both this summer and next.
“The aim of London 2012's Pre-Games Training Camp Programme is to allow athletes to compete at their very best through acclimatisation and training and I have no doubt that Surrey Sports Park and Bisley’s National Shooting Centre will both support the Singaporean athletes by providing excellent training facilities.”
Bob Gambardella, the SSC's chief of Sports Development Group, said: "After careful evaluation, the Surrey Sports Park was chosen as it best met the training needs of Team Singapore.
"Their sport and supporting facilities are sports specific and are of international standards. Their facilities are also relatively new and clustered within one area, making it easy for athletes and officials to access.
"Of the four locations, the Surrey Sports Park is also the closest to the Olympic Games Village in east London, approximately an hour-and-half's drive away."
Paul Blanchard, Surrey Sports Park Chief Executive, said, “We are both excited and proud that the Singapore Sports Council have chosen Surrey Sports Park as the training base for their Olympic athletes prior to London 2012. With a vast array of world class sports facilities, we feel our sports park will prove the ideal training venue for Singapore’s athletes, and will ensure they are fully prepared for a successful Olympic Games.”
The first training stint at Surrey Sports Park and Bisley’s National Shooting Centre will be held from July 27 to Aug 14 this year, with up to 40 athletes and 26 officials from four sports - badminton (10 athletes), shooting (10), swimming (8) and table tennis (12) - making the trip. A second camp will be held from July 14 to 24 next year.
Built at a cost of £35 million and completed in April last year, the University of Surrey owned sports park is home to a 50-metre indoor swimming pool, three multi-purpose sports halls, 10 grass and three artificial pitches, eight outdoor and indoor tennis courts, a 700-sqm fitness centre and a 60m sprint track.
Surrey Sports Park played host to the 2010 Women’s Rugby World Cup last year and has provided training facilities to a host of national and professional sports teams including the England National Men’s Rugby team and Harlequins Rugby Union team.
At the 2008 Beijing Games, Team Singapore was represented in six sports - athletics, badminton, shooting, sailing, swimming and table tennis.