2014 Commonwealth Champion Ross Murdoch was on-hand in Glasgow yesterday to help reveal the logo and concept for 2018’s inaugural, multi-sport European Championships.
The European Championships combines the existing, separated European Sporting Championships of athletics, aquatics, cycling, gymnastics, rowing and triathlon, while also introducing golf team championships. 2018 marks the first version where the individual sports’ championships, typically held independently, are combined in one multi-national, multi-sport event. The hope is that by combining the individual sports’ championships together, more interest will be generated in each sport than if they were held by themselves.
The newly re-branded championships is held every 4 years, with 2018’s athletics portion held in Berlin and all other sports’ taking place in Glasgow, the site of Murdoch’s gold medal-winning 200 breaststroke. Approximately 1500 athletes are expected in Berlin August 7th-12th, with more than 3,000 expected in Glasgow August 1st-12th. Slated to be broadcast through the European Broadcasting Union and their free to air broadcast partners, estimates put the projected TV audience of the 2018 European Championships at about 1.03 billion.
From an athlete’s perspective, Murdoch said, “Every athlete wants to compete at the highest level and that is exactly what the European Championships is all about.”
He continued, “Multi-sport events bring out the best in athletes and also in the fans who love getting behind their nation. The moment I won gold at the Commonwealth Games will live with me forever.”
More on the topic of swimming’s media exposure, Murdoch commented “Generally swimming in Europe gets a lot more coverage than it does in Britain, I was just at a French meet and they sold it out, with people paying to sit on the stairs and it was televised. Something like that would be amazing, we can’t even get our Olympic trials on the television, that would be a start.”