Tuesday, 2 August 2022

UPDATED: William & Kate Take Charlotte to the Commonwealth Games

It was a day of Commonwealth Games in Birmingham for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and Princess Charlotte.

If I'm not mistaken, it's the first solo engagement we've seen Charlotte undertake with her parents. Over the weekend, the seven-year-old joined William to wish the Lionesses the best of luck and today she's enjoying inspiring sporting feats at the Games. Charlotte was cute as a button in a breton stripe Rachel Riley dress.

It's been a year of meticulous planning, and Birmingham Sport shared an insight into their vision for hosting the Games: "Birmingham 2022 will shine a light on this vibrant corner of the Commonwealth and work to improve health and wellbeing. This is an event that will help the West Midlands to grow and succeed, be a catalyst for change, and foster the spirit of friendship, athleticism and competition. This is a Games for everyone, a level playing field for men and women with a fully integrated para-sports programme, and a huge emphasis on the Commonwealth’s youth. There is no better stage to showcase the world’s most inclusive, fair and progressive multi-sport event."

The Commonwealth Games bring nations together in a vibrant celebration of sport and human endurance. The Games have evolved dramatically since beginning in 1930. Held every four years, with a hiatus during World War II, the Games have grown from featuring 11 countries and 400 athletes, to a global spectacle of 4,600 sportspeople from across 72 nations and territories. Underpinned by the core values of humanity, equality and destiny, the Games aim to unite the Commonwealth family through a glorious festival of sport. Often referred to as the ‘Friendly Games’, the event is renowned for inspiring athletes to compete in the spirit of friendship and fair play.

More on highlights over the years from Commonwealth Sport:

'At the 1954 Vancouver Games, Roger Bannister and John Landy became the first people to break the four-minute mile in a race that became known as the ‘Miracle Mile’.

Chantal Petitclerc became the first gold medal winner in a para-sport in 2002. An occasion that marked the first time an event for an athlete with a disability had been part of the official programme.

And women’s boxing became a mainstay of the Commonwealth Games in 2014 with Team England’s Nicola Adams taking the first gold medal in the flyweight division.

The encouraging ethos of the Games has stirred athletes to sprint faster, leap higher and push themselves to the very limits of what the human body is capable of.'

Charlotte looked delighted to greet Perry the Games Mascot. Perry was designed by 10-year-old Emma from Greater Manchester following a national contest.

The trio enjoyed the swimming heats at Sandwell Aquatics Centre.

Scenes at the pool.

The Cambridges also took the opportunity to check in with Kate's patronage SportsAid.

SportsAid is the only national charity of its kind -- helping young British sportsmen and women aspiring to be the country's next Olympic, Paralympic, Commonwealth and World champions. Every year, SportsAid supports over 1,000 athletes -- the vast majority aged 12-18 -- by providing a financial award to help with training and competition costs. The charity also helps develop other vital skills for professional athletes, such as media training, nutritional advice and performance lifestyle guidance. Kate has been patron of the charity since 2013.

Almost two-thirds of the British team at London 2012 were former -- and in some cases current -- recipients of SportsAid’s support, winning twenty Olympic and twenty-seven Paralympic gold medals between them. Alumni include Sir Chris Hoy, Sir Ben Ainslie and Paula Radcliffe MBE. The organization celebrated their 40th anniversary in 2016. Their support for British Athletes throughout the Commonwealth Games has been invaluable.

They met coaches.

The trio meeting competitors. 

A team photo.

Big smiles all round. 

They also stopped in on the hockey.

The Countess of Wessex is patron of England Hockey and was in attendance again today with Edward, Louise and James.

A group photo with gymnasts Alice Kinsella and Ondine Achampong. 

The Duchess wore her crisp white Alexander McQueen suit.

Embed from Getty Images

Kate wore her Camilla Elphick Alicia shoes. 

Kate accessorised with her Mappin & Webb Empress jewellery.

I'll leave you with this lovely mother-daughter photo. It was a treat to see the little Princess today :)

I wouldn't rule out the possibility of another Commonwealth Games appearance. 

Sunday, 31 July 2022

Kate's Nautical Chic for Commonwealth Race in Plymouth

The Duchess of Cambridge was back in action today for an exciting afternoon in Plymouth at the Sail GP.

It marks the Duchess' first public appearance since the Wimbledon finals three weeks ago. It's understood the Cambridges have been holidaying in the UK, my personal guess is they might be making summer trips to Cornwall -- a new tradition in their schedule. Spending more time in the area both personally and professionally will be important with William set to take over the management and income of the Duchy of Cornwall when the Prince of Wales ascends to the throne. This week is an important one in British sport (more on the incredible Lionesses a little later in the post) and of course the Commonwealth Games which the Cambridges are slated to attend on Tuesday.

It was a lovely day for sailing.

The Duchess was in attendance today in her role as patron of the 1851 Trust.

Kate became patron of the trust in 2014, and it is the charitable arm of the UK team's bid to bring the America's Cup back to Britain. The organization plans to work with under-25's to inspire and encourage a new generation to get involved.

Sir Ben Ainslie has been at the forefront of efforts in British Sailing for quite some time now. He's been hugely grateful for Kate's support and ahead of today's visit said: "She's a really good sailor in her own right. She has sailed with me on foiling boats as well and we're expecting a little bit of extra help, given she's sailed across the Atlantic."

Before a quick change of outfit for sailing, Kate spent time with children involved in the 1851 Trust's 'Protect Our Future' programme, which equips young people with skills and education relating to climate science.

The Duchess joined the children for activities.

More from the Evening Standard:

'Before the race, Kate spoke to members of both teams who explained how the SailGP vessels work.

She appeared intrigued with the tour, although the time it took led to Sir Ben to joke: “Come on, we’ve got a race to do, mate.”

Before the race, Kate met excited youngsters who told her how they were growing seagrass, and took part in activities educating young people about sustainability.

Carnegie Bedlow, 12, from St Helier in Jersey, said: “I was a little bit nervous but she did what I told her and she was very good.

“She asked me if I was interested in sailing. I do sailing camps in the summer, I love the ocean.”

Then it was time for a spot of sailing...

It was a friendly Commonwealth Race with Great Britain and New Zealand participating.

The Evening Standard reported: "The race, which took place ahead of the official final events of the SailGP international sailing competition in Plymouth, saw Great Britain take on endurance swimmer and environmentalist Lewis Pugh as a guest racer alongside Peter Burling and Blair Tuke on the New Zealand F50."

It was a very friendly race with both sides enjoying competitive banter.

Kate's team were victorious! A big thumbs up from Ben.


A video from the engagement.


And more sailing footage from the Telegraph. 


Kate was nautical chic for the afternoon. The fitted stripe sweater with the perfectly tailored shorts looked fantastic on the Duchess.

The Duchess sported Erdem's past season and sold out Lotus sweater.

Kate teamed the sweater with a pair of Holland Cooper Tailored Shorts in 'oyster linen'.

The Duchess wore a new pair of her trusty Superga Cotu sneakers (with thanks to the eagle-eyed Kate Middleton Style and What Kate Wore).

Kate wore her Orelia London Chain Huggie earrings.


For her sailing look, the Duchess wore an O'Shea wetsuit (with thanks to UFO No More) and the Adidas Pureboost trainers she's had for years. We also saw a new pair of SunGod Sierra sunglasses -- the Great Britain Sail GP style (with thanks to Kate's Closet).



************

Now, we were discussing the Lionesses a little earlier. It was a very special and historic day for England women's football. Ahead of the game William, President of the Football Association, and Princess Charlotte had a message of good luck :)
In a spectacular game against Germany, the Lionesses roared, winning 2-1 to claim the Euro 2022 championship title.


More from the Independent:
'England manager Sarina Wiegman hailed the impact her team’s historic Euro 2022 victory has made on women and society while revealing she dedicated the win to her late sister who passed away before the tournament.

Wiegman’s team ended 56 years of hurt by defeating Germany 2-1 after extra time in front of over 87,000 fans at Wembley, a record crowd for any match at the European Championships, becoming the first England manager since Sir Alf Ramsey in 1966 to win a major international tournament.

The Dutchwoman was only appointed as England manager 10 months ago but has now won successive Euros after leading the Netherlands to glory five years ago.

Wiegman also revealed that the wristband she kissed at full-time was in dedication to her late sister, who passed away in June. Wiegman was forced to miss part of England’s training camp due what the FA said at the time was a “close family bereavement”.'

I'll see you Tuesday for the Commonwealth Games.

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