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12th European Short Course Championships in Rijeka, Dec 11-14, 2008
By Marko Puljić | Published  12/10/2008 | Sports | Unrated
Rijeka plays host to 12th European Short Course Championships

 The Kantrida Swimming Complex

Rijeka (pps) After the excitement of the Long Course Spring-Summer period (including the European Championships in Eindhoven and the Olympic Games in Beijing), the European swimming elite will now dive into the Short Course competitions in just a few weeks time.

The 12th European Short Course Swimming Championships in Rijeka, Croatia (11-14 December), will surely be an undisputed highlight. Federations from 38 countries have already announced their participation and more than 600 swimmers are expected to compete.

On occasion of a recent site visit to Rijeka, LEN Secretary Sven Egil Folvik (of Norway) pointed out that preparation for the 12th European Short Course Swimming Championships are on track and that he has full confidence in both the Croatian Swimming Federation and the ‘Rijeka08’ Organising Committee. He hopes the citizens of Rijeka will enjoy the swimming festival in December.

Folvik also complimented the city authorities for their new swimming complex which will be more than ready for the Championships. The Kantrida swimming pool complex, officially opened on July 24th, is the first major sporting center built in Rijeka in the last 30 years.

The first "test event" for the indoor pool will be staged in November 2008 when Rijeka will host an international swimming meet. This event will be the final test before the 12th European Short Course Swimming

Championships. This event will celebrate the centennial anniversary of swimming in Rijeka and of local sport club Viktoria - Primorje 08.

Tomislav Karlo, General Secretary of the Croatian Swimming Federation, will be the Competition Manager. At the 1996 and 1999 European Short Course Championships he won silver in the 50m backstroke event. His compatriot and World Short Course Champion Duje Draganja, will try to retrieve the 50m freestyle World Record he set at the World Short Course Championships in Manchester last April but then lost to South Africa’s Roland Schoeman on September 6th.

Dear Athletes of the 12th European Short Course Championships, Dear Participants, Journalists and Visitors,

Rijeka is truly looking forward to the 12th European Short Course Championships that will take place in the challenging Kantrida Swimming Complex. More than 600 top athletes, from some 50 European countries, accompanied with quite a number of distinguished persons related to this wonderful sport, along with more than 400 journalists, are expected in Rijeka in December 2008 with open hearts and warm hospitality of Rijeka citizens, grateful and proud to be given the chance of bringing evidence of their ability in the organization of such a demanding sports event.

Rijeka’s history, its present and the future, even its name, is tightly related to water. The city was established in Roman times, along both banks of the Rjecina River, and a safe port was developed around the deep Bay of Kvarner. Rijeka is, of course, the most important Croatian port city, and one among the top ten European ports. From a former industrial centre, Rijeka is unfolding into a dynamic city of services and urban tourism. Interesting cultural events attract many visitors, and the organization of demanding sports events are a kind of follow-up to its long history as a city investing a lot in the development of sports and boosting with many top athletes. All water related sports like swimming, water polo, rowing and sailing have deep roots in Rijeka and its region.

This Kantrida Swimming Complex is of the Olympic size and represents the whole pride of every single person living in and around Rijeka. The Complex will be adjusted to special requirements of Short Course Championships, to fully match the LEN demands. I hope that this special building achievement will give pleasure and joy to everyone, the swimmers, the organizers, the spectators and all involved in this reputable sports event.

Not only Rijeka but the entire Region along the Adriatic, known for the beauty of its landscape as well as the open and communicative residents with a deep Mediterranean spirit, welcomes you to the 12th European Short Course Championships, hoping that this extraordinary sports event, the friendships you will make here, the moments you will remember, will be as pleasant as possible, to make you come back again and to explore the natural beauties of this Region on a future occasion.

However, above all, I hope that this event will generate top achievements by the swimmers. To the athletes I wish many excellent results, to the organizers a full success, and to everyone involved a lot of joy and excitement!

Vojko Obersnel
, M.Sc.
President of OC

Formatted for CROWN by   Marko Puljić
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