On Sunday, Glasgow 2014 ambassador and Olympic
and Commonwealth medalist Tom Daley brought the Queen’s Baton back
to British shores in a packed welcoming ceremony in the
picturesque Jersey harbour of St Aubin, the first stop on the
British Isles for the relay.
Tom Daley was joined by 23 year-old Team Jersey
medal hopeful and British Indoor Championship shot-putter Zane Duquemin.
Arriving in to the harbour on Jersey Port’s Pilot Boat
just after 18:00 and cheered on by hundreds of local well-wishers,
they carried the Queen’s Baton into the historic harbour where
young athletes – including 12-year old club swimmers Robbie Jones
and Fran Stubbings – welcomed them in a public ceremony,
officially kicking off the home leg of the Queen’s Baton Relay.
In addition to the crowds of fans and supporters, the
event was also attended by a number of Jersey athletes, past and present, as well as Lord Smith of Kelvin, the Chairman of the Organising Committee of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Earlier that afternoon, over 100 local young athletes, many of
whom hope to represent Team Jersey at the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games and beyond, were given the opportunity to
attend an informal Q&A session with the Glasgow 2014 ambassador,
and hear first-hand about the commitment, mind-set and training
regime that places Daley amongst the top young sportsmen in the
The baton touched down at Jersey Airport at 15:40,
guided to safe ground by Air Traffic Controller Simon Militias, a
former Commonwealth Games medallist who won bronze at the
Manchester 2002 Commonwealth Games. Officials from Jersey’s Commonwealth Games Association, including its President Alan
Cross, received the baton from European Vice-President of the
Commonwealth Games Federation, Chris Jenkins, in a short, private
ceremony before the baton was passed to the 19-year old superstar
diver for its dramatic reveal to the British public.
next 32 days the relay will journey through Jersey, Guernsey, Isle
of Man, Northern Ireland, Wales and England, rallying athletes as
they get ready to compete for medals in Glasgow, and encouraging
everyone to get behind their Home Teams.
When it reaches
Scotland on 14 June 2014 the baton will embark on a 40-day
journey through 400 communities across Scotland. Up to 4,000
people will carry Her Majesty’s message, before it is read aloud
at the Opening Ceremony on 23 July 2014.
Preparations for the
Games are well-advanced and enjoy huge public support. The first
round of ticket sales attracted 2.3 million ticket requests for up
to 1 million tickets. Today (12 May), offers up the last big
opportunity to purchase tickets as
100,000 extra tickets are put on sale to the general public.
Glasgow 2014 Ambassador Tom Daley, said, “It’s been a huge
honour to be the first baton bearer on the British Isles, I’ve had
a great time today in Jersey. Glasgow 2014 is a huge focus for me
– and feeling the enthusiasm and support of the crowds and the
commitment of the young athletes I had the opportunity to meet
today – makes the Commonwealth Games feel very real. It’s mad
to think that the baton has already travelled over 190,000
kilometres around the Commonwealth and will be carried by more
than 4,000 people on its journey round the Home Nations. I’m so
pleased I got to play a part in the relay – what a great thing to
be a part of.”
Duquemin, Team Jersey athlete and British Indoor Shot Put
Champion, said, “There was such
buzz and excitement when Tom and I brought the Queen’s Baton into
St Aubin harbour here in Jersey; it really makes the countdown to
the Games very real! This is a huge milestone for me personally
and it’s focused my mind on training to put myself in the best
possible position for a place on the podium in Glasgow this
See other recent news regarding: