The Olympic Training Camp in Mittersill is brimming with the extreme potential of athletes from around the world and Austria welcomes both new and old faces back for some gruelling training and fantastic hospitality.
This year more than 1500 athletes, coaches and guests from 67 nations have come together to start the new season with a hard camp in preparation for all kinds of events but the one most are talking about, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, with less than 200 days to go. European Judo Union President, Mr Sergey Soloveychik is happy to welcome the athletes;
It is a pleasure to see our best European Judokas, our promising athletes, Champions and guests from all over the world here in Mittersill. We are really proud of this event.
Half a year before the Olympic Games, it a great opportunity for our athletes to get in shape for the upcoming events. I hope they can qualify for the Olympic Games in Tokyo and that they can win medals for their countries, for their families and for their national federations.
I also appreciate the work of the Austrian Judo Federation. It is such a friendly atmosphere and the hospitality is amazing. They did a great job.
Walking down in to the training area, the athletes step on to 1300 square meters of mat area in the Kogler Sports Hall. The highest level athletes are in attendance including five 2016 Olympic Champions and two 2012 Olympic Championships; Teddy Riner (FRA) Majlinda Kelmendi (KOS), Khasan Khalmurzaev (RUS), Beslan Mudranov (RUS), Tina Trstenjak (SLO), Sarah Menezes (BRA) and Lasha Shavdatuashvili (GEO) are among them.
President of the Austrian Judo Federation, Mr Martin Poiger boasts of the once again impressive turnout and the Austrian Federations pleasure of hosting this incredible event;
We are very happy to welcome more than 1100 athletes here in Austria. We are glad that so many teams are starting their preparation for the Olympic Games here in Mittersill. It is also a great chance for our national teams to train with the best athletes.
There are of course reigning World Champions in the midst as well including Noel Van T End (NED), Clarisse Agbegnenou (FRA), Marie-Eve Gahie (FRA), Daria Bilodid (UKR) and Lukhumi Chkhvimiani (GEO).
Up to six training blocks take place every day and the athletes will continue to work until January 15th to get in shape for the upcoming season. As mentioned previously, Teddy Riner is one of the many judo heroes using this time wisely in preparation for Tokyo and has recognised the high importance of this OTC;
I have never seen such a big Judo camp like this before. It is my first time in Mittersill and I am really impressed. Normally the date doesn’t fit to my training schedule but this year I have to prepare for the Olympic Games and I am happy to be here.
The snowy backdrop is stunning as ever, the Pinzgau region always providing the participants with plenty of activities and as always, a memorable camp and strong start for the new year.
Author: Thea Cowen