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Gearing up for Navarino Challenge sports tourism fest in Greece

Navarino Challenge - Perikilis Iakovakis - Mandy Persaki - Dean Karnazes_by Mike Tsolis

The official presentation of Navarino Challenge 2017 took place on 27 September – World Tourism Day – with a series of media and stakeholder presentations announcing the event’s highlights. The fifth annual sports tourism fest will take place on 13-15 October 2017, in Messinia and Costa Navarino in Greece with a variety of open water swimming, running and stand up paddleboarding (SUP) events.

The press conference was hosted at the Wyndham Grand Athens hotel, and was attended by distinguished guests, including among others, the Greek American ultramarathon runner Dean Karnazes, who is participating at the event as its ambassador in Greece and abroad for the fifth consecutive time. Also on hand was Olympic and World Champion in 400m hurdles, Periklis Iakovakis.

On behalf of Costa Navarino, Marina Papatsoni, Marketing & Business Development Director at TEMES, said “When we conceived the idea of Navarino Challenge in 2011, we didn’t think that we would have achieved as much as we have today. It is one of those cases where we succeeded in doing much more than we would have dreamed of!

“Navarino Challenge is a great celebration, where athletes and organizers come together, have a good time, learn to love nature, sports, good nutrition and eventually learn how to live better. We look forward to seeing you all in Costa Navarino to share, once again, unique moments and experiences.”

Akis Tsolis, Chief Executive Officer of Active Media Group, said “As the United Nations General Assembly affirmed when announcing 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development, tourism can contribute to all the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental – and each of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals. All these goals have brought Navarino Challenge at the top of sports tourism events.

“With principles based on the Olympic ideal and fair play, from the first year in 2013 the event generated innovation and had a key role among sports tourism events. Once you participate in Navarino Challenge you will understand the essence of the famous Greek hospitality. The athletes that participate all comment how friendly and inviting the Messinians are. We owe huge gratitude to the people of the region and Costa Navarino for all they have done to make Navarino Challenge a success. We want the next generation of Greeks to feel and act differently about exercise, the environment and personal responsibility. We want to be part of creating a better Greece.”

On the official airline partner side, Theresa Cissell, Country Manager for Greece & Cyprus, of Qatar Airways, added “Qatar Airways, the national carrier of the state of Qatar, is celebrating 20 years of going places together with travellers across its more than 150 business and leisure destinations. Qatar Airways proudly supports a range of exciting international and local initiatives dedicated to enriching the global community that it serves.

“Qatar Airways, the official FIFA partner, is the official sponsor of many top-level sporting events, including Navarino Challenge, reflecting the values of sport as a key element in bringing people together. Navarino Challenge is a unique event that aims to raise awareness about the benefits of healthy living and exercise as well as the issue of childhood obesity; and through its numerous activities promotes the spirit of sportsmanship and fair play. Qatar Airways’ sponsorship strategy is aligned with the Qatar Vision 2030 and is based on three core pillars of Sports, Culture and Education, and for three consecutive years we are proud to fulfil our vision through Navarino Challenge and its ambassadors.”

Navarino Challenge will be held under the Auspices of the Greek National Tourism Organization with the co-organization of Costa Navarino, the Westin Resort Costa Navarino and Active Media Group and the support of the Municipalities of Pylos-Nestor and Trifilia.

Sponsor partners include:

  • Official Airline Partner: Qatar Airways
  • Official Technology Partner: Samsung
  • Official Sponsors: Sportingbet, Vikos Natural Mineral Water, Ford Motor Hellas
  • Official Nutrition Supporter: Melissa
  • Official Supporters: BIC, BIC Sport, Wyndham Grand Athens, Poseidonia, Surf Salad
  • Strategic Partner: National Geographic

The event is also assisted by: Inbi, Navarino Outdoors, Swim Academy, Navarino Racquet Academy, Apia, Health Runners Club of Messinia, Pylos Association of Enterprises for Tourism Development, Maritime Athletic Pylos Association ‘Nestor’, Explore Messinia, Navarino Golf Academy, Hellenic Athletics Federation (SEGAS), IAAF Kids Athletics, Vizantinos target sport club.




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