Patron of the Invictus Games Foundation, Prince Harry, unveiled the UK Team for the 2016 Invictus Games, sponsored by Jaguar Land Rover.
Jaguar Land Rover are the presenting partner of the Invictus Games as well as the proud sponsor of the UK Team – continuing their support of the inaugural games and the UK Team in 2014. The UK delegation to the Invictus Games 2016 is being delivered by a partnership comprising The Ministry of Defence, Help for Heroes, and The Royal British Legion.
More than 180 WIS military personnel and veterans trialled 10 sports for one of the 110 places available in the UK Team. The rigorous selection process was based on the benefit the Invictus Games will give an individual as part of their recovery, combined with performance and commitment to training.
Congregating for the first time at Buckingham Palace, the 110 strong team included James McGill, former Grenadier Guard and Jaguar Land Rover employee, who will represent his country at the Games held in Orlando, Florida, May 8-12.
Prince Harry took time to congratulate McGill who will take part in Track and Field and Swimming events. McGill joined Jaguar Land Rover in July 2015 and was encouraged to take part in trials along with other former and serving armed forces personnel colleagues, demonstrating the company’s strong commitment to actively employing former military.
2016 Invictus Games UK Team member and Jaguar Land Rover employee, James McGill, said: “I am hugely excited to be selected for the UK Team for the 2016 Invictus Games. Today has been a very special day, joining all my fellow team members at Buckingham Palace and meeting Prince Harry. The journey to selection has been tough, with so many great competitors in the mix, but the Invictus Games has given so many former and serving men and women a renewed focus and set of goals which should never be underestimated.
“I am very proud to be selected and represent the UK, and equally proud as a Jaguar Land Rover employee. The support Jaguar Land Rover gives to the UK Team and Invictus Games makes this all possible. Rehabilitation is a very personal thing but to be in employment and have a focus and support from a company like Jaguar Land Rover is one of the reasons I am able to be here today and look forward to competing in Orlando in May.”
Since 2013, Jaguar Land Rover has hired over 200 former servicemen and servicewomen, working closely with the Career Transition Partnership, the Ministry of Defence's official provider of Armed Forces resettlement.
Jeremy Hicks, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover UK, added: “There is a close alignment between Jaguar Land Rover’s values and the vision of the Invictus Games, that inspiring performances and passionate, unstoppable persistence enriches people’s lives.
“We’re incredibly proud to continue our role as presenting partner of the 2016 Invictus Games and sponsor the UK Team, and we’re delighted that Jaguar Land Rover employee James McGill will be representing us on the field in Orlando. We wish them all well on this exciting journey.”
In addition to unveiling the UK Team, the Invictus Games Flag was presented by Prince Harry to 2016 Invictus Games US Team Captain, Will Reynolds, who will take it to the United States as part of the Official Flag Relay. Captain Reynolds departed Buckingham Palace in the specially commissioned Jaguar F-PACE ‘Official Flag Vehicle’ which will transport the flag from London to Orlando – symbolising the handover of hosting rights of the Invictus Games.
The Invictus Games are the international adaptive sporting event for WIS Servicemen and women, both serving and veteran. The inaugural Invictus Games, held in London in September 2014, saw over 400 competitors from 13 nations compete in nine sports. The Invictus Games 2016 will see 500 competitors from 15 nations compete in 10 sports. The selected UK Team will compete in ten sports: Athletics; Archery; Wheelchair Basketball; Road Cycling; Powerlifting; Indoor Rowing; Wheelchair Rugby; Swimming, Sitting Volleyball, and a new sport for 2016, Wheelchair Tennis. The first medal opportunity in Orlando will be contested by the 15 competing nations on May 7 in a driving challenge event, sponsored by Jaguar Land Rover.