Harrow Achieve Almost Perfect 10 to reach All London Panathlon Final!

In the London West final of the 2010 Panathlon Challenge, the team from Harrow achieved an almost perfect score to sweep their opponents aside and proceed triumphantly to the grand final in June. The event took place on 19 March at the West London Academy, Northolt, London. As well as Harrow, teams from the boroughs of Brent, Hillingdon, Hounslow and Ealing took part. All the teams had fought through earlier rounds to reach this stage.

After a full day of sporting contest in 6 separate events, including athletics, cricket, football, kurling, and polybat, the Harrow team achieved maximum points in all the sports except cricket, which was won by their opponents from Brent, to achieve a record score in the Panathlon event.

Harrow will join Barking and Dagenham and Lambeth plus 2 other teams to be determined in the next week, in the final at the Westway Sports Centre, London W10 6RP on 24 June.

Jody Cundy, who has represented Great Britain in both swimming and cycling, accumulating an incredible 23 international medals, including 14 Golds, was on hand to encourage the athletes & together with Councillor Barbara Yerolemou, Mayor of the borough of Ealing, hand out medals and prizes.

The events go ahead with the help of new investment from the Mayor of London’s office through the Sports Legacy Plan for London. Additional funding comes from the Football Foundation, the Jack Petchey Foundation, and Capital Radio.

95.8 Capital FM’s Help a London Child Free Sport for All programme, awarded Panathlon £3,500 to help prepare, develop and sustain the activity in 6 West London Boroughs. Rich Horsnell, Grants Manager from 95.8 Capital FM’s Help a London Child said: ”Help a London Child is proud to once again fund support of the Panathlon Challenge, by giving the capital’s young disabled people the chance to participate in regular coaching sessions culminating in the West London finals. Having attended last year’s finals it was inspiring seeing hundreds of children enjoying taking part in a wide range of well organised sporting competitions, we’re certain that same will apply to today’s event. Help a London Child remains committed to giving sporting opportunities to London’s children by funding activities like Panathlon through our Free Sport for All programme.”

Kate Hoey, MP for Vauxhall and principal adviser to London Mayor Boris Johnson as Commissioner for Sport, said: “With the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games fast approaching, Panathlon is exactly the kind of initiative that we should all be getting behind. It brings real, competitve sport to those who might otherwise have missed out on involvement. The Mayor and I are both committed to getting as many young people as possible involved in sport. Events like this show that disability need not be any obstacle to participation. Panathlon deserve huge praise for what it is doing.” Afterwards, she kindly presented medals to all competitors and prizes to the winning team.

The Panathlon Challenge is now in its tenth successful year of delivering sporting opportunities and “mini-paralympic” type competitions for young disabled Londoners. This year around 1,000 participants will be involved.

Panathlon will invest around £250,000 in sports equipment, coaching sessions and multi-sports competitions over the next few months which will culminate in the London wide Final taking place on June 24th for the winners of the 5 regional finals taking place in March.