The camp is ideally located just a short flight from Dublin via either Bilbao or Bordeaux. From the moment we touched down in Bilbao everything was run very efficiently. Transport was always on time throughout our trip which makes traveling with 22 teenagers much more tolerable!
The facilities are superb with dormitories or tents for the players and dormitories for the accompanying coaches that were spotlessly clean with plenty of sheets, pillows and hot water. The food is excellent raging from paella to cous cous to ratatouille with plenty of bread and cheese thrown in. We chose to get our team up at 630am for their first rugby / fitness session. But officially the first session is at 9.30am with another one in the afternoon depending on when the afternoon activity of sailing, surfing, canoeing etc finishes.
All coaching sessions from the very first one on the day of arrival to the last one before departure were conducted professionally keeping the emphasis on skills and performing them in game like situations. Both Nigel Osborne and Billy Davison were excellent in their ability to coach the specific skills we wanted and even after 10 years plus of rugby coaching I learnt a lot of different angles to teaching skills that I will be able to use for the future.
The location in the south of France allowed us to visit Biarritz for some sightseeing and also attend a Leinster vs Dax preseason game. The village of Soustons itself is within easy walking distance of the camp and there is a local shop and a market on the weekends. All in all from this first preseason camp we have had a marvellous experience and it has been ideal preparation for the JCT team. I can’t recommend this camp enough and we are already planning to take our SCT team to Soustons next August. Many thanks Nigel and all at Rugbyandfrench.com for a fantastic start to our season.
Head of Rugby St Andrew’s College Dublin