St Mary’s University, Twickenham will host athletes from the Japanese Association of Athletics Federations (JAAF) in their preparations for the London 2017 World Athletics Championships.
London 2017, which will be hosted in the Olympic Stadium from 5th to 13th August, brings together the world’s leading athletics talent to compete in a range of Track and Field events.
St Mary’s will provide training facilities, accommodation and catering to 26 JAAF athletes competing in a range of endurance running, race walking and jumping events. Amongst the athletes based at St Mary’s is Rio 2016 Olympian Hirooki Arai, who won a Bronze medal in the 50km race walking.
The University has a proud history of hosting sports teams ahead of major championships. Ahead of London 2012, St Mary’s hosted ten national teams in their preparations for the Olympic Games, including Ireland, Australia, and China, amongst others.
During Rugby World Cup 2015, the University was a joint Team Base with the nearby Lensbury Club for champions New Zealand. The University also hosted Finalists Australia, and semi-finalists South Africa.
Director of Sport Andrew Reid-Smith said, “We are delighted to be welcoming Team Japan back to St Mary’s and are looking forward to supporting the athletes and coaches in their final preparation for London 2017. The University’s world-class setup for athletics provides an ideal base and I’m sure we’ll see more memorable performances from Team Japan’s athletes.”
JAAF Head of Endurance Mr Tadasu Kawano said, “We are delighted to be basing ourselves at St Mary’s University. The university has a great reputation for sporting excellence and we can’t wait to see our athletes training on the Sir Mo Farah Athletics Track.”
The athletes from JAAF join nine athletes and alumni from St Mary’s who will be competing a range of events during the championships. Seven of who were Rio 2016 Olympians and Paralympians, including Sir Mo Farah, who will be looking to complete a historic quintuple-double of World and Olympic titles.