Hoogenband is also looking forward to EYOF in Győr

After a busy day on Wednesday, the Chefs the Mission Seminar in Győr continued on Thursday with the venue tours. Pieter Van den Hoogenband, Chef de Mission of the Dutch delegation, told us what EYOF means to him, and what memories he has from Hungary, while László Fábián, Sports Director of the Hungarian NOC, listed what the Chefs the Mission have to bear in mind. The groups in handball and basketball are ready, and the artistic gymnastics schedule has also been drawn...

Three times Olympic champion swimmer Pieter van den Hoogenband, whose world record could not be broken for eight years used to be the competition director of the European Youth Olympic Festival in Utrecht, and he participates at the event in Győr as the leader of the EYOF team of the Netherlands. The one-time world record holder had his first success at the European Youth Olympic Festival in 1993, and now, as a Chef de Mission his aim is to encourage young athletes and contribute to their success. "I am a committed supporter of the European Youth Olympic Festival. This is a competition where young athletes can be encouraged to improve, to achieve better results. Talented youths are coming from all the countries of Europe, so the event has a unique, yet natural atmosphere, which is incomparable to anything else." The Dutch national hero has very pleasant memories of Hungary, as he had his last great success in Budapest, at the European Championships. "This was a great moment for me, as I had my last huge victory in Hungary, in Budapest, where I won the gold medal. I remember that Hungarians were extremely helpful and I have great memories of Hungarian swimmers, who are talented, passionate, and professional. Hungary can be really proud of them."

"In the organisation process of the European Youth Olympic Festival, the Chefs the Mission meeting has a crucial role", said László Fábián, sports director of the Hungarian Olympic Committee. The official reminded that although Chefs de Mission have to coordinate several issues simultaneously, from accommodation to travelling, from security to competition venues, the most essential thing is to make the team feel at home, no matter where the competition is. He says in this respect, Győr will be beneficial for Hungarian youths. "We have to help our athletes to solve all difficulties, in case of any request, we do our best to help and to prevent problems. When we are already at the competition venue, one of our main concern is to provide comfort, so that they can prepare and relax peacefully to achieve the best possible results." To our question what his message is to youths participating at the EYOF in Győr, the Seoul Olympic champion said "They should feel good, try to do their best, as they have already worked a lot. They should regard this competition as a milestone on their path to the Olympics preparing them to further youth Olympic events, or the Olympic Games, as there is no doubt the atmosphere at such an international event cannot be experienced at trainings or international tournaments."

The group drawing of three sports also took place in Győr during the meeting of the Chefs the Mission.

At the ceremony, the groups of handball were drawn first:

Group A: Norway, the Netherlands, Romania, Hungary
Group B: Denmark, Russia, France, Montenegro

Group A: Croatia, Germany, Denmark, Hungary
Group B: France, Slovenia, Spain, Iceland

Results of the drawing in basketball:

Group A: Czechia, Lithuania, Hungary, Germany
Group B: Belorussia, Turkey, Spain, Italy

Group A: Finland, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, Italy
Group B: Lithuania, Estonia, Hungary, Turkey

Finally, the drawing of gymnastics took place, where the order of nations allocated to sports equipment was set. In gymnastics, 33 nations enrolled in the boys' competition, and 36 in the girls' competition.

(photos: Győr 2017 EYOF/O. Jakócs Péter)

Side Events of EYOF

Side events of EYOF at the Dunakapu square in Győr

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It has been a great honour for Hungary and the City of Győr to obtain the rights to host the 2017 European Youth Olympic Festival. 

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