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London Olympic Test Events

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Visa International Gymnastics

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Visa International Gymnastics
UCI Track Cycling World Cup
FINA Visa Diving World Cup 2012
Wheelchair Rugby
FINA Synchronised Swimming
ISSF World Cup Shooting
London International Hockey Tournament
London Water Polo International
Wheelchair Tennis
Paralympic Archery
Boccia
Paralympic Athletics: London Disability Grand Prix
British Gas Swimming Championships 2012
Athletics: British University Championships
London Prepares Series
 

 

There are still a number of Olympic Test Events taking place in London 2012 venues so you can get a taste of the Summer Games before the big kick-off.

 
 

London Prepares Series

Just what are the Olympic Test Events?

 

You applied for thousands of pounds of London 2012 Olympic tickets and youreceived nothing; worse still - your only success was the weight lifting heats or the first round of the Paralympic goalball competition. Don't fret! You too can get a slice of London 2012 by making the most of the numerous Olympic Test Events still scheduled ahead of this summer's bigbonanza. These Olympic and Paralympic Test Events are part of the London Prepares series that is trialling each London 2012 sport and venue ahead of the Summer Games. Don't be confused - these are not actual Olympic events - but tickets are cheap, the events involve some of the world's best athletes and they're a great chance to get a taste of all the action before the curtain is finally raised on 27th July 2012. It's basically a dress rehearsal for the athletes and theorganisers - and a bonus for those fans who didn't snap up tickets for the real McCoy.

 
 
 

Visa International Gymnastics

10th - 18th January 2012 - The O2 (North Greenwich Arena)

 

Gymnasts from around 60 different nations are due to take part in the seven day Visa International Gymnastics, the last chance for gymnasts to qualify for the London 2012 Games. Gymnasts will compete in all three disciplines: Artistic, Trampoline and Rhythmic Gymnastics. The men’s Artistic Gymnastics covers six pieces of apparatus: floor, pommel horse, rings, vault, parallel bars and high bar while women only compete in the Rhythmic Gymnastics performing to music using a rope, hoop, ball, clubs or ribbon. Reigning rhythmic gymnast champion, Russian Evgenia Kanaeva (who won individual gold in the 2008 Olympics and swept the boards at the qualifiers in Montpelier in September 2011), is among the world-class gymnasts who will be performing at this event. If you haven’t managed to secure tickets to the Olympics this test event, part of the London Prepares series, is an important qualifier which offers sports fans another chance to get close to the action. The venue, the North Greenwich Arena (also known as The O2), hosts the artistic gymnastics, trampoline events and the basketball finals during the 2012 Olympic Games as well as the wheelchair basketball during the Paralympic Games a few weeks later.

 
 
 

UCI Track Cycling World Cup

16th - 19th February 2012 - Velodrome, London Olympic Park

 

Top track cyclists from around the world give spectators a pre-taste of Olympic action at this UCI Track Cycling World Cup event at the new state-of-the-art Velodrome in the London 2012 Olympic Park. This will be the first sporting event to be staged at the Velodrome, which was designed in consultation with Sir Chris Hoy, Britain's triple gold medallist from the Beijing Games. Part of the London Prepares series that is testing out venues ahead of the eagerly anticipated London 2012 Olympics, this is the fourth and final round of the UCI Track Cycling World Cup after previous legs in Astana, Cali and Beijing, and precedes the Track Cycling World Championships in Melbourne. Results from both the World Cup and World Championships will help determine each country's ranking for Olympic qualification so expect this to be a fiercely competitive four days.

 
 
 

FINA Visa Diving World Cup 2012

20th - 26th February 2012 - Aquatics Centre, London Olympic Park

 

The world's best divers from around 50 different nations are due to take part in the 18th FINA Visa Diving World Cup 2012 at the Aquatics Centre in the London 2012 Olympic Park. Although Zaha Hadid's slick Aquatics Centre was opened back in July 2011 with a dive from British athlete Tom Daley, this World Cup event will be the first ever sporting event to be staged in the venue and will give competitors their first opportunity to test the waters and compete under the iconic wave-like roof ahead of the Summer Games. It will also give spectators who may have missed out on London 2012 tickets the chance to see a competitive event held in one of the Olympic's principal venues. This will be a key stepping stone to the Olympics: in both the men's and women's event, the 18 semi-finalists will qualify for a place at the London 2012 Games. Meanwhile, in the Synchronised events, the four highest ranked teams that have not previously qualified will achieve a place for London 2012.

 
 
 

British Gas Swimming Championships 2012

3rd - 10th March 2012 - Aquatics Centre, London Olympic Park

 

Great Britain's top swimmers take to the pool to secure a place on Team GB in the Olympic Games in the British Gas Swimming Championships 2012. The likes of double Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington, 50m backstroke world record holder Liam Tancock and double Paralympic gold medallist Ellie Simmonds will all be in action during this week of swimming trials at Zaha Hadid's slick new Aquatics Centre. For most British swimmers it will be their first taste of the new Olympic pool, while for spectators who failed to snap up tickets for London 2012, this is an ideal opportunity to get a slice of pre-Olympic action – and check out the Olympic Park in the process.

 
 
 

Wheelchair Rugby

18th - 19th April 2012 - Basketball Arena, London Olympic Park E20 3BB

 

Wheelchair Rugby is, hands down, one of the most thrilling, aggressive and intense of Paralympic Sports - a sport that blends Wheelchair Basketball, Ice Hockey and Handball, and one that's so physical it used to be tagged 'Murderball'. This two-day Wheelchair Rugby Test Event is part of the London Prepares series ahead of the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics. Preceded by one day of training, the event will be staged at the new Basketball Arena in the Olympic Park in Stratford - the same venue for the real Paralympic event in September.

 
 
 

FINA Synchronised Swimming

18th - 22nd April 2012 - Aquatics Centre, London Olympic Park

 

The FINA Olympic Games Synchronised Swimming Qualification Tournament takes place at the Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park at Stratford this spring. The Olympic Test Event is part of the London Prepares series ahead of the eagerly anticipated Summer Games. As well as allowing the London 2012 Organising Committee to test crucial aspects of its operations ahead of the 2012 Games, the series will feature world-class sporting events - bringing top athletes to London's iconic existing venues and brand new venues in the Olympic Park. In this case, it's a great chance for spectators to experience Zaha Hadid's state-of-the-art Aquatics Centre ahead of the Olympics - while giving top synchronised swimmers the opportunity to secure their qualification for the Games, and test out the waters before the whole world watches. Interestingly, London 2012 sold 10,000 too many tickets for the Olympic Synchronised Swimming event so this test event could well be over subscribed as a result.

 
 
 

ISSF World Cup Shooting

18th - 28th April 2012 - The Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich SE18 5DP

 

The world's top elite marksmen compete in this international rifle, pistol and shotgun competition which also serves as an Olympic qualification and Test Event ahead of London 2012. The 11-day ISSF World Cup event will be the ideal opportunity for both competitors and spectators to get a taste of the historic Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich, which will host the Olympic shooting competitions this summer.

 
 
 

London International Hockey Tournament

2nd - 6th May 2012 - The Hockey Centre, London Olympic Park, London E20 2ST

 

One of the fastest team sports at the Olympics, the Hockey events will certainly provide rich entertainment come the summer. But if you aren't one of the lucky few to have been able to secure tickets, the test event at the newly built Hockey Centre in the Olympic Park is the next best thing. This is no simple practice occasion, however: the London International Hockey Tournament will take place over the four days, giving the world's best players a chance to test out the new Hockey Centre ahead the summer's main event. The tournament will offer London crowds the chance to see world-class action at a top quality, 16,000 seater venue. Do note – this isn't hockey like the Americans or Canadians call it.

 
 
 

London Water Polo International

3rd - 6th May 2012 - Aquatics Centre, London Olympic Park, London E20 2ST

 

The London Water Polo International will double as the test event for the Olympic Water Polo competition and will take place in the Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park. A women's only event, consisting of Great Britain and three other international teams, the event will run over four days in May and will give London audiences the chance to witness the very best in thrilling, high-octane sport. Three days of preliminary matches will lead up to the finals day as the world's best players seek to gain valuable practice before the summer's main event. If you've never seen live water polo before, you're in for a treat – think of it perhaps as an aquatic version of rugby.

 
 
 

Wheelchair Tennis

3rd - 6th May 2012 - Eton Manor, London Olympic Park, London E20 2ST

 

Wheelchair Tennis has notable differences from regular Tennis in that the ball is allowed to bounce twice, with only the first bounce having to land within the court boundaries. Since its inception in the 1970s, wheelchair tennis has grown in popularity – there are now over 170 tournaments on the ITF Wheelchair Tennis Tour. London crowds will have two chances to see some action this summer, with the Paralympic event in September and the test event in May, both at Eton Manor (the only new permanent Paralympic venue) in the Olympic Park. Wheelchair Tennis is one of the fastest-growing participation sports in the UK and British players are among the best in the world.

 
 
 

Paralympic Archery

3rd - 6th May 2012 - The Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich SE18 5DP

 

International Paralympic archers trial out standing and wheelchair events for individuals and teams in this four-day Olympic test event at the Royal Artillery Barracks in Woolwich. The event is part of the London Prepares series, which runs high-profile tests and trials all all London 2012 venues and for all events ahead of this summer's Olympic bonanza. The historic Barracks hosts the Olympic shooting competition as well as the Paralympic shooting and archery events - and for those who have not managed to snap up London 2012 tickets, this is the next best thing.

 
 
 

Athletics: British University Championships

4th - 7th May 2012 - Olympic Stadium, London Olympic Park, London E20 2ST

 

The very best of UK student athletics comes to the Olympic Stadium in May as they take part in track and field competition as part of the British University and Colleges Sport Championships. The athletics events at the Olympics will surely be one of the most high profile occasions throughout the Games so it's vital to ensure that facilities and conditions at the Olympic Stadium are perfect. With the incredibly high demand on tickets to the athletics events for the Games, this is a perfect opportunity for those that are still keen to see the new stadium in all its splendour.

 
 
 

Boccia

5th - 7th May 2012 - Basketball Arena, London Olympic Park E20 3BB

 

What's boccia? Well, since you ask, let us explain: it's a sport unique to the Paralympic Games played by wheelchair athletes of either gender with cerebral palsy and related locomotor conditions. The aim is to throw leather balls towards a target ball, or jack, across a series of demanding 'ends', or sets, on a playing area measuring 12.5m by 6m. The strange thing about this Paralympic Test Event is that it does not take place at the ExCeL Centre, the venue that hosts the London 2012 Paralympic Boccia competition. Instead, it will take part at the new Basketball Arena in the Olympic Park in east London. Even so, this will be a chance for spectators to get a pre-taste of Olympic action - or perhaps simply brush up on the rules of an unfamiliar but enthralling sport ahead of the Summer Games.

 
 
 

Paralympic Athletics: London Disability Grand Prix

8th May 2012 - Olympic Stadium, London Olympic Park, London E20 2ST

 

Sports lovers will be treated to a full day of Paralympic Athletics ahead of London 2012 with the London Disability Grand Prix meet, the final Test Event ahead of the Summer Games. Taking place in the new Olympic Stadium in the Olympic Park in Stratford, this is part of the London Prepares series that is acting as a dress rehearsal for all Olympic and Paralympic sports and venues ahead of London 2012. With this early May event just over two months before the Olympic Opening Ceremony, it will be the last chance for spectators to experience the Olympic Stadium in a competitive scenario before the final tweaks are made ahead of the Summer Games. It will also give international disabled athletes a superb opportunity to test out track and field facilities at the 80,000-capacity Olympic Stadium ahead of their final preparations for Paralympic glory.

 
 
Sophie Wallace

EDITOR

Sophie Wallace

22nd December 2014

 

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