Founded in 2006 the School Games were established after London won the bid to host the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and formed a key part of the legacy programme. Now in its 13th year, the annual competition has grown exponentially since its inception, with 2018 featuring the biggest every shake up of featured sports.

Whilst mainstays like Athletics, Cycling and Hockey remain, new for the 2018 are Canoeing & Rowing, Laser Run, Netball and Triathlon. The Games also features five sports that include disability competition, with the likes of sprinter Sophie Hahn and wheelchair basketballer Katie Morrow both School Games alumni.

Team GB has enjoyed plenty of success in canoeing, rowing and triathlon at the Olympic and Paralympic Games, whilst England’s netball triumph at the Commonwealth Games in April thrust the sport into the public domain like never before, with participation sky rocketing in the following months.

Laser Run however is a sport that many people might not have even heard of, let alone tried, and consists of running and shooting a laser gun at a target. The event provides an opportunity for young athletes to work on their fitness while also developing other vital skills such as focus, control and stamina. Laser Run is a fantastic pathway into Modern Pentathlon, which includes swimming, fencing, riding, running and shooting - however it is quickly becoming a popular sport in its own right.

Modern Pentathlete Samantha Murray threw the sport into the spotlight at the London 2012 Olympics when she moved from fourth to second during the laser run, winning a stunning silver. Of the sport’s inclusion in the 2018 School Games Murray commented:

“It’s amazing news for Modern Pentathlon and shows how our sport is growing. The final event of the pentathlon is a Laser Run and it is an exciting race that requires pacing and poise in order to shoot with precision and still run at a competitive pace.”

If you’d like to see the next generation of Olympic and Paralympic stars in action, tickets for the events are available now at https://www.schoolgamesfinals.org/buy-tickets/

For further information contact:

Pete Matthews, Loughborough University, T: 01509 228686, E: p.w.matthews@lboro.ac.uk, @lborouniPR

There will be a wide range of media opportunities throughout the 2018 School Games that will only be available to accredited media. Access to view the sporting competition will also only be granted to those media who have the correct accreditation. Please apply for accreditation at https://www.gmsportal.co.uk/SG2017/Login.aspx.

Loughborough University is equipped with a live in-house broadcast unit via the Globelynx network. To arrange an interview with one of our experts please contact the University’s press office on 01509 223491. Bookings can be made online via www.globelynx.com