Olympic Fever

Excitement and preparations build for the arrival of the Cuban Paralympics, Namibian and Zambian Olympic teams in July and August. The city of Glasgow will be hosting three Olympic and Paralympics training camps for the teams as they make final training measures ahead of the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics Games.

The Namibian team will be the first to arrive, training in Glasgow between the 1st and the 16th July. The team is composed of twenty-three athletes and support staff including coaches. The fourteen athletes are training and competing in 7 Olympic sports. Six in Athletics, three in Boxing, one in the Triathlon, one in Road Cycling, one in Mountain Biking, one in Wrestling and one in Shooting.

The Zambian team will be the next to arrive on the 10th July before they make there way to London on the 24th. There will be fifteen athletes participating in the training camps out of the team of 20 who are travelling to Glasgow. The Zambian athletes include two Swimmers, two Judoka, two Badminton players, two Boxers and five competing in Athletics.

The Cuban Paralympics team will be training in Glasgow between the 12th and 22nd August. This will be the largest team utilising the training camps consisting of fifty-four athletes, coaches and officials. Twenty-nine are athletes specialising in the following sports:

  • Athletics: Track and field (16 athletes)
  • Cycling: Road events (1 athlete)
  • Judo (7 athletes)
  • Shooting (1 athlete)
  • Powerlifting (2 athletes)
  • Swimming (2 athletes)
One of the main stars of the Cuban Paralympics team is 35 year old cyclist Damian Lopez Alfonso. After an incident that destroyed his arms up to the elbow at the age of thirteen, Damian started riding a bike to get around. Over years of riding on pocked Cuban highways, he developed an unorthodox riding style, in which he balanced the ends of his elbows on upturned handlebars. 

For more information on Damian, follow the link:
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/15/nyregion/the-cyclist-damian-lopez-alfonso-heads-for-paralympics.html

Each team will make use of the 2 LOCOG accredited Glasgow Life venues, the Palace of Art and Scotstoun Stadium and leisure centre with other venues being used wherever necessary.

Scotstoun Stadium and Leisure centre 

Zambia will use the venue to train in Athletics and Swimming with their Badminton players making use of Scotstoun’s National Badminton academy.
The Cuban Paralympics and Namibian team will also be making use of Scotstoun’s Athletics facilities.
All teams will be able to utilise Scotstoun’s fully equipped weights gym and physiotherapy facility.

Palace of Art

The training camps will use the boxing ring, dojo and weight-training facilities at the Palace of Art.

Zambia will be there to train in Judo and Boxing, Namibia for Boxing and Wrestling whilst Cuba will go between Scotstoun and the Palace of Art for Power Lifting and Judo.

A team of volunteers will be recruited by Glasgow Sport to meet and great the teams, act as team chaperones and liaison officers as well as assist in the coordination of a social programme for the athletes.

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