Gold Coast shines for GC2018 Queen's Baton Relay
The boundless energy of the Gold Coast has lit up the Queen’s Baton Relay (QBR) as the city gets set to shine on the world stage for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games (GC2018).
From Hope Island and Paradise Point all the way to Ashmore and Bundall, 120 local legends carried the Queen’s Baton under the sunny skies the city is famous.
Among the everyday heroes that keep the Gold Coast going, were some of Australia’s great athletes, including Nikki Hudson, former Hockeyroos captain and two-time Commonwealth Games gold medallist.
“Having been an athlete for so many years, you think I’d be used to moments like this but I’m actually a little bit nervous. It’s really nice to be here chatting to all the other batonbearers as well, it helps elevates the nerves a little bit.
“You see [the athletes] going to training and gosh, I remember what that was like!
“I couldn’t think of a better place to have the Commonwealth Games. The Gold Coast, the people are great and everyone has come from afar to be here to support the Commonwealth Games and have a holiday as well. I’ll certainly be there on the sidelines cheering and the Kookaburras and the Hockeyroos on.
“I only wish I could’ve been able to keep playing to be here and compete myself. It’s going to be a wonderful event and I can’t wait to watch myself.”
The legacy of the Games was on the mind of Batonbearer Daphne Pirie AO MBE, whose wealth of athletic experience has seen her inducted into the Queensland Sport Hall of Fame.
“Today is significant for me because [the QBR] is here on the Gold Coast. My passion is sport and I know what this event [GC2018] is going to do for us. What it’s taught us all too is about the countries and nations of the Commonwealth, we’ve watched the way each country has accepted the Baton and it’s so exciting to think it’s now down to us locals.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity, fortunately I’ve been around the traps for a while so I’ve seen a lot of Olympics and so forth, but for Gold Coasters it’s going to be a wake-up call for them – what international sport is all about. Our athletes will be the winners because we will now have, and can now boast, international-standard venues.”
The QBR made a stop into Highland Park and Nerang, where it spent time inspiring two athletes from Lesotho at the Nerang Mountain Trails venue. Finally ending the day in Ashmore and Bundall, with some very familiar faces.
Tomorrow, the QBR will set off from Coolangatta bright and early and travel along the coastline north to Surfers Paradise, before The Beautiful Girls headline a major QBR celebration on the beach.