Prince Harry Announces Third Invictus Games in Toronto
London, 16 March 2016 – Prince Harry, Patron of the Invictus Games Foundation, today announced that the third Invictus Games have been awarded to Toronto, Canada.
The Invictus Games Toronto 2017 will take place in September 2017 and will have more competitors, more participating nations and more sports than ever before.
Making the announcement via video message, Prince Harry explained why he is delighted there is another chapter in the Invictus.
Prince Harry said: “The last Invictus Games inspired tens of thousands of people and was enjoyed by millions of others around the world. I always hoped the Invictus story would continue after the London games. And having seen so many new people benefit from their journey to Orlando this year, I definitely didn’t want it to end here. So today, I am absolutely delighted to announce that the Invictus legacy will continue when Toronto host the third Invictus Games in September 2017. 2017 is a year steeped in rich Canadian military history, marking the anniversaries of historic battles that shaped and defined the nation. It’s also the year when Canada will commemorate its 150th anniversary of Confederation. I can’t think of a better way to mark this milestone than by paying tribute to the soldiers and veterans who have served their country so bravely and to support them along their journey to recovery.”
The Invictus Games Foundation, established to develop and pursue the event’s legacy, sets out desired requirements for future host cities to ensure the next Invictus Games meet stringent quality standards. This includes a mandatory minimum of 10 participating nations, 250 competitors and five sports; a strong families programme; appropriate venues and sport infrastructure; extensive broadcast and media coverage and access to the Games for spectators and media.
The Toronto bid won the rights to the 2017 Invictus Games as it demonstrated a real understanding of the core concept and vision of the Games. The Invictus Games Foundation felt Toronto’s sporting venues and great city infrastructure would offer competitors and their families a real Canadian experience. Having recently hosted thousands of visitors during the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games, the Invictus Games will present another opportunity for Toronto to showcase its status as a world-class tourism destination.
Bruno Guévremont, 2016 captain of Team Canada said: “I know first-hand how difficult it can be to struggle with physical and mental health issues that are related to the service you have given to your country. Competing in the Invictus Games on home soil will provide me and my fellow military competitors with the pride and confidence needed to push our minds and bodies beyond what we thought was possible – to represent our country shoulder-to-shoulder, as we once did.”
Michael Burns, chief executive officer, Invictus Games Toronto 2017 said: “This country’s non-military citizens actively look for ways to express their gratitude to our military, and the Invictus Games will provide an ideal forum for what we know will be an unprecedented outpouring of support.”
The announcement was made with just over 50 days to go to the start of the Invictus Games Orlando 2016, presented by Jaguar Land Rover. Hundreds of men and women around the world are currently making their final preparations, preparing their bodies and minds to push harder than ever before, to show the world what they can achieve post-injury. The Games will take place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex from 8 – 12 May.
Tickets for the Invictus Games Orlando 2016 are now on sale and can be purchased at http://invictusgames2016.org/tickets/.
Prince Harry’s video message can be downloaded in three versions, one with background music, one without background music, and one as an edited clip:
1. Version with background music: http://we.tl/lzXipLC8sN
2. Version without background music: http://we.tl/xa49XqNoQr
3. Shorter, edited clip: http://we.tl/nfNKQcYaET
The Invictus Games is the international adaptive sporting event for wounded, injured and sick Servicemen and women, both serving and veteran. The Games use the power of sport to inspire recovery, support rehabilitation and generate a wider understanding and respect of all those who serve their country.
The inaugural Invictus Games, held in London in September 2014, saw over 400 competitors from 13 nations compete in nine sports, as well as a driving challenge organised by Jaguar Land Rover. Crowds of over 65,000 people packed venues on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and Lee Valley Athletics Centre from 10 – 14 September and more than 10 million watched the Games on the BBC.
The Invictus Games Orlando 2016 will take place at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex from 8 – 12 May 2016. 500 competitors from 15 nations will take part in 10 sports.