With eight days to go until the start of the European Aquatics Championships and just over three weeks to go to the start of the Arena European Masters Championships, excitement is building.
More than 10,000 athletes across synchronised swimming, diving and swimming have entered the Championships at the London Aquatics Centre at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
Such interest is unprecedented and is a strong testament to the growing interest in masters aquatics across Europe and signals a new high water mark for the sport. The LEN Bureau does recognise that such a level of unprecedented interest presents challenges for LEN and the LOC and, as such, compromises have to be made to accommodate all entries.
LEN and the LOC are working hard to ensure all synchronised swimmers, divers and swimmers entered enjoy the absolute best experience at the Championships in London. The longer distance events at the Championships will operate as they have done in the past with two swimmers per lane. All three pools at the London Aquatics Centre will be in use for the Championships and warm up will be very limited.
The Championships are sure to be busy but the LEN Bureau believe it will be a fantastic celebration for the masters movement and one that can be learnt from. The LEN Bureau and the LOC hope all masters athletes will work with us to ensure we all enjoy this unique opportunity.
The London Aquatics Centre is one of the world’s greatest sporting venues but it has changed a lot since the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
In legacy mode capacity at the London Aquatics Centre has severely reduced and spectator access will be regulated for the Arena European Masters Championships. Entry will be based on a first come, first served basis and once the agreed capacity is reached it will be a one in, one out policy.
We kindly request that once spectators have watched their family member or friend race at the London Aquatics Centre that they leave the venue to allow other families and friends to enter and watch the racing.
Please be prepared to queue to get entry into the London Aquatics Centre. The LOC committee will do everything possible to enable access but there will likely at times be queues to get into the venue.
It will not be possible to watch the racing live in Pool 2. The events in Pool 2 will be streamed on to the video board in the seating area for Pool 1. The LOC and LEN are still investigating if the events in Pool 2 can be streamed on LEN’s online TV channel and further information will be shared once a decision is made on this.
Only athletes who are competing in an event that day will be able to access the venue with accreditation. This will be controlled through a code on the accreditation which will advise security as to who can have access and at what times. Athletes will be allowed in to the sport information area but not passed the security barriers.
Access for warm ups will be restricted to those competing in the events during the identified session.
We would like to request that clubs do not attempt to set up reserved areas where they come and go. This will restrict the number of spectators who can watch racing and does not create the best experience for all.
The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park has lots of places to explore and eat and drink and we encourage families and friends to make the most of their time in London once they have watched the racing.
Medal ceremonies will take place at the Podium across from the London Aquatics Centre and they will be offering discounts on food and drink to masters families and friends.
The event social media pages will be used to provide information on spectator capacities, so please follow Aquatics2016 on Twitter and Facebook to get the latest information that may help avoid large queues.
The competition schedules for diving, synchronised swimming and swimming have all been updated to include warm-up times and start times. These can be found by clicking on the links below:
An official guide for athletes for the Arena European Masters Championships can be found HERE