BUDAPEST, March 27, 2017 - Three major events are coming the Hungarian capital of sport lovers, Budapest. During the AIPS Europe Media Summit we had the chance to receive a more detailed presentation about the upcoming FINA (14-30, July 2017) and IJF World Championships but also the highly entertaining Gyulai Istvan Memorial, presented by Marton Gyulai, Vice President of IAAF Youth and Social Media Committee.


FINA WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS The Hungarian Member of FINA Media Committee Gergely Csurka expressed his enthusiasm for the third biggest sport event of the world coming to Hungary. He said: “This is definitely the biggest event Budapest is going to host, Hungary is a truly aquatic-dedicated nation, we have great swimmers, we have had the very first Hungarian Olympic Champion of our history in 1896, Alfréd Hajos who was also the architect of one of the venues which will host the event. So we can see how tradition is built from generation to generation; if you think about the great swimmers we have nowadays the likes of Katinka Hosszu and Laszlo Cseh, and also great waterpolo teams”.


HUNGARY AND SWIMMING For Hungary, it is more than just an event to be held in heart of Europe explained Csurka. “This is a sport-loving nation, every event will host thousands of crazy fans. At the very end, I believe we will say that this event will leave an impressive legacy in terms of venues. According to neutral observers, the Danube Arena is one of the best aquatics facilities in the world, this is something we really wanted, a great event and a great legacy”.


MEDIA CONDITIONS After the crash down of the Internet connection in the last 2015 FINA World Championships in Kazan, Russia, one of the media biggest concerns is the connectivity, a service that will be available to journalists and photographers to cover the event next July. “Budapest already hosted the European Championships in both Swimming and Waterpolo," explained Csurka. "And in both events the media were satisfied with their working conditions, now we will have even better facilities for the written press in the Danube Arena where the swimming and diving competitions will take place. We will have more than 500 press seats, in the outdoor venues we will have full covered facilities. I think we will offer a wide range of hotels and hopefully what is the most important is that the WI-FI connection will be dedicated to the journalists while the photographers will have their own cable connection to avoid any crash, like what happened in Kazan”.


JUDO IS NOT JUST A SPORT It was Nikolas Messner, the International Judo Federation Media Director, who gave the European sport journalists audience a panoramic view on the upcoming flagship event represented by the Budapest World Judo Championships 2017 (August 28 - September 3, 2017). The Judo International Federation president office is set in the Hungarian capital of Budapest as mentioned by the president Marius Vizer during the welcome dinner on the Danube River held last Sunday, March 26 for all the guests.


COMPETITIONS The World Championships have been preceded in Budapest by several other international judo events throughout the last three years: “The scale was smaller but we will be using the same arena for the World Championships, working with the same people we used to work with perfectly in the past." The presenter told to the audience. "This event represents a flagship for our federations and will be followed in the next years by Baku 2018 and Tokyo 2019”. The money prize has been increased to reach an impressive amount of one million US Dollars and according to Messner, Budapest will impress both the media and fans more than Kazan thanks to the easier reachable position of the Hungarian capital.


TEAM EVENTS The last day of the seven-days format competition will witness the mixed teams event, which will bring to the World Championships teams of 6 athletes each with complete equity between men and women from the five continents. This event is expected to create a unique competitiveness and a vibrant atmosphere. The Team Event was also proposed to follow the contents of the Olympic Agenda 2020 hoping that this mixed event will find its place in the next Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo in four years.


JUDO FOR THE WORLD With a programme called “Judo for the world” the IJF already visited many different countries and will now go to promote this discipline in Russia, Mongolia and Japan. “We already visited the middle of Amazonas in Peru where all the kids involved were more than happy to come in contact with Judo." Messner said while presenting an impressive video presentation. "There are 28 million of Judoka in over 200 countries, judo is practically everywhere and its meaning is not just as the sports one, but what we strongly believe in is its positive impact on the society, judo works as a discipline to inspire the younger generations to a better world.”


AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST July 4, 2017 is the official date of the next Istvan Gyulay Memorial Athletes Contest that will be held in Budapest. Istvan Gyulay was a well-known member of AIPS Family who passed away in 2006. He was the Secretary General of the International Sport Press Association and the IAAF. His son, Marton Gyulay is now a member of the IAAF Youth and Social Media Committee and explained how important was it for Budapest to have started this event in town after going many decades with a lack of big athletics events. “Our aim was to give the athletes and the public the best one day athletics meeting in the world outside of the IAAF Diamond League ones." Gyulay’s son said. "The mission of our sporting events is to create an annual meeting place for families and sports enthusiasts, so not just for die-hard fans but anybody who looks at the athletics enjoying it”.


AMBITIOUS PLAN “What we are trying to do year by year is to raise up in the in the competitions ranking, like the one offered by" continued Marton Gyulay. "We have been able to move from the 33rd position to enter in the top twenty events in the world while spending 3 or 4 times less than the Diamond League events”.


Maria Pia Beltran, AIPS Media in Budapest