The 2012 IPC Athletics European Championships will be the third edition of the event. Previous Championships took place in Assen, the Netherlands in 2003 and Espoo, Finland in 2005.
The first time the event was held, from 15-21 June 2003, the competition opened with a spectacular Opening Ceremony, in which parachutists, motorbike riders, music corps, dancers and a theatre group performed in front of nearly 3,000 spectators.
There were nearly 700 participants in the Championships, and 46 world and 29 European records were broken throughout the week.
France finished top of the medal table with 15 gold medals, but Germany had the most overall medals with 53.
Top performers included Belarus’ Tamara Sivakova, who set new world records in the Shot Put F12 and Discus F12 whilst the Netherlands’ Marijke Mettes, set a new Pentathlon world record. The Netherlands’ Anette Roozen became her country’s first European champion by winning the 100m T42.
The second edition of the event from 21-28 August 2005 drew 1,247 participants from 35 different countries, including 12 nations from outside of Europe. Of those participants, 880 were athletes and 367 were team officials.
The large Opening Ceremony was attended by IPC President Sir Philip Craven and President of the Republic of Finland, Tarja Halonen, and YLE (the Finnish Broadcasting Company) televised two days worth of the event.
Throughout the competition, 12 world and 20 European records fell.