Eighteen nations arrived in central England over the weekend to compete at Great Britain’s first European Cup for juniors. The event took place on the same site as the British National Training Centre with many familiar faces from the GBR senior elite team working within the organising committee.
-57kg medallists at the Birmingham Junior European Cup. Photo courtesy of Mike Varey and the EJU.

Austria, France and the Netherlands came with particularly strong teams, with many inside the top ten of the world ranking, plus medallists from many of the junior world tour events, including current European Youth Olympic champion Joshua De Lange (NED).

Joshua De Lange on his way to the podium. Photo courtesy of Mike Varey and the EJU.

A regular medallist on the World Judo Tour, Katie Jemima Yeats-Brown, and world number one, Lucy Renshall, could be found commentating the live stream and joining in with the many tasks being completed to keep the event running smoothly. There was a great atmosphere overall, which then carried over into the training camp, which closes today.

Lucy Renshall and Katie Jemima Yeats-Brown hard at work. Photo courtesy of Mike Varey and the EJU.

Among the coaching personnel at the camp were world champion and double Olympic medallist Jimmy Pedro (USA), 2012 Olympic medallist Felipe Kitadai (BRA) and 3-time world champion Masashi Ebinuma (JPN), making it a phenomenally productive and inspirational occasion for all the young judoka present.

The training camp, well under way.

The event will be an annual one and so team GBR are already planning to lift the event further for next year.

World and 3-time European medallist Natalie Powell gives the training camp a big thumbs up.
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