North-east Olympian, Hannah Miley, launched a new London 2012 affiliated sports engagement initiative on Friday (18 November) that will run at Robert Gordon University until the London 2012 games.
The sports and exercise science student and RGU: SPORT Scholar played a ceremonial role in the first heat of ‘RGU's Greatest Athlete’ – a seven-month series of Olympic sporting challenges and festivals run by staff and volunteers at the university’s state-of the-art sports facility, RGU: SPORT.
On the morning of the launch, the programme was granted the London 2012 Inspire mark, the badge of the London 2012 Inspire programme which recognises exceptional and innovative projects inspired by the 2012 Games
On the day, 18 students competed throughout the afternoon in the first of a four-heat, multi-sport challenge to win the university’s inaugural greatest athlete award. The competitors battled it out over a trio of events, namely a 1000m rowing race, followed by a 1600m cycling challenge and lastly a 50m swim finale.
Foundation printmaking student, Robert Strachan, took pole position on the day. The keen rower was followed by runner-up, pharmacy student and swimmer, Aimie Reid. Their certificates, which they received from Hannah directly after the heat, have secured them places in the April 2012 final.
The day’s activities finished at 3.30pm with a celebratory swim festival that was open to students from across the university.
The remaining heats in the challenge, which will take place once a month, will see the university’s budding sport stars compete in a range of other Olympic sports, including basketball, table tennis, badminton, rock-climbing and football.
With the London 2012 Games on the near horizon, and the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games not far behind, ‘RGU’s Greatest Athlete’ aims to support the UK-wide campaign to increase grass root participation in sport and improve the performance of athletes. A host of festivals and cultural events will run parallel to the heats to raise awareness of health and wellbeing as important elements of a well-rounded student experience.
Hannah, who most recently took seven gold medals at the Sunderland ASC Firecracker gala, said: “This is a great event for the university community and I’m pleased to be playing my part in encouraging fellow students to get involved in sport, whether participating competitively or simply as a way to keep active.”
President of Sport and Physical Activity Nicola Scott is working with student volunteers from the university’s Sport and Physical Activity Team to deliver the series of events.
She stated: “The Olympics and Commonwealth Games are an inspiration to us all, and athletes like Hannah are shining examples of the good that sport can do at the levels of the individual and wider society. In running this series of events, we hope to capture this spirit of participation and further develop the university’s culture of engagement in physical activity.”
Seb Coe, Chair of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games said: “RGU’s Greatest Athlete is encouraging the university community to fulfil their potential. I am proud that with the help of partners such as RGU, we are delivering our vision to use the power of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games to boost participation in healthy activities.”
Robert Strachan and Amie Reid receive their certificates from Hannah Miley after Heat One of RGU's Greatest Athlete.
Notes to editors
- About the Inspire programme: The Inspire programme is run by the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games. It is an opportunity for everyone to be a part of the London 2012 Games – a broad participation programme spanning sport participation, education, sustainability, volunteering, and business opportunities & culture. New opportunities are being created to inspire young people and encourage the whole of the UK to join in. The Inspire programme has awarded over 1,400 different projects the Inspire mark.
- RGU: SPORT is Robert Gordon University’s £11 million state-of-the-art sports facility which features a 25m swimming pool, three gyms, a climbing wall and bouldering room, café bar, three exercise studios and a vast sports hall. The facility was established in 2005 to improve the sporting infrastructure available for the region and to act as a social hub for the University’s Garthdee campus.
Communications Officer | Faculty of Health and Social Care
Robert Gordon University
Tel: 01224 262389