T&FT@30 – Rewind 1994:
The biennial European Champs / Commonwealth Games combo saw large groups of fans travel to Helsinki and Victoria with T&FT for a pine scented summer athletics double. The GB team was second only to Russia in the Euros medal table with predictable golds from Christie, Jackson, Backley, 4 x 400m Men and Gunnell and a breakthrough run from Duaine Ladejo .
On the social side the T&FT Helsinki Welcome Party event started with a boat cruise to the party venue on one of the islands in the archipelago. Our star guests included the 1970’s “flying Finns” and Olympic champions Lasse Viren & Pekka Vasala who both generously spent their time with us. Later during the championships the T&FT International Supporters Relay event saw an Irish team victory with the men in green “managed” by John O’Sullivan (Sonia’s father) supported by his daughter. So great for fans to share their experience with athletic stars, past and present.
In Canada, in the delightful atmosphere of Vancouver Island, 34 medals were won by UK athletes with 29 of these English to top the CG Athletics medal table. Our group enjoyed the quaint atmosphere of Victoria – as regal as its name suggests – combining great sport with whale watching and other outdoor excursions – the perfect sports fans holiday.
As if the summer had not been busy enough the UK domestic season had another double double. Birmingham had hosted the Europa Cup and both the Men & Women GB teams came 2nd to qualify for the IAAF World Cup Final event that because of the British success was then hosted in London at Crystal Palace to sold-out crowds. The GB Men’s team came within just 4 points of winning being narrowly bested by Africa to round off a remarkable summer of athletics – what a season!