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VAN COMMENEE PREPARES FOR MOST COMPETITIVE TRIALS IN 20 YEARS

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Charles van Commenee

25 May

UK Athletics Head Coach Charles Van Commenee has hailed the Aviva 2012 Trials as the most competitive Olympic trials for 20 years, since the Barcelona trials in 1992 which ultimately resulted in two gold and four bronze medals at the 1992 Games.

A record-breaking 1,050 athletes have already qualified for the Aviva 2012 Trials at the Birmingham Alexander Stadium on 22-24 June, making it one of the biggest British qualification events of any Olympic sport this year. Household names such as Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis, Phillips Idowu and Dai Greene will all be in action as they battle for London 2012 selection.

Van Commenee is pleased with the level of competition for places in many events and warned of the tough test that lies ahead in the battle for Olympic qualification.

He said: “I am looking forward to the Aviva 2012 Trials. There is a depth in the sport that we have not seen for 20 years and we have a number of events where five or six athletes are competing for three places. It doesn’t take a genius to work out the maths and athletes will need to be at the very top of their game at the Olympic Trials if they want to make the team for London 2012.”

This is the first Olympic trials Van Commenee has overseen since becoming Head Coach in September 2008, and the Dutchman understands that anything can happen when athletes are fighting for a once in a lifetime opportunity to compete at a home Games.

“I expect athletes to rise to the occasion and give the selectors selection headaches. Of course there will be athletes who don’t perform and others who will surprise us which will make for a fantastic weekend of top level British sport.”

Athletes can guarantee nomination for Olympic selection by finishing in the top two positions in their event at the Aviva 2012 Trials – as long as they also hold a current ‘A’ standard. Team GB will be announced by the British Olympic Association on 3rd July 2012.

The timetable of events at the Aviva 2012 Trials can be found at http://uka.org.uk/results/20120622_birmingham/timetable/index/index.html

Back the team and watch over 750 of Britain’s best athletes in action at the Aviva 2012 Trials at the Birmingham Alexander Stadium from 22nd-24th June. For tickets visit www.uka.org.uk/aviva-series or call 08000 55 60 56.