Italians win big at IFSC Paraclimbing Event

Vision-impaired climber and guide (Photo: Up climbing)

IMST, Austria — Italian climbers dominated the IFSC Paraclimping Masters event at Kletterzentrum Imst, winning four events in the final day of competition.

The biggest winner was Alessandra Mammi who dominated the women’s B3 classification (the B classification is similar to other sports in that it signals visual impairment), winning with 130 points. Her nearest opponent was teammate Martina Pellandra with 108 points while Austrian Gabriele Frohlich finished rounded out the medals with 72 points.

Simone Salvagnin claimed the win in the men’s B2 with 194 closely followed by two more Europeans with Romanian Ravzan Nedu with 186 points and a tie for third at 182 points in Italian Giulio Cevenini and Spaniard Raul Simon Franco.

Success for the Italians continued in the men’s AL1 seated with Lorenzo Major winning 122 to defeat teammate Antonio Trevisani with 74. The women’s RP3 (limited range power) event was also claimed by an Italian with Tiziana Paolini winning with a score of 120.

Germany was next best with three gold while Austria, Israel, Slovenia and Spain picked up two wins each. It was a broad European field as Paraclimbing continues its growth in the early stages of the sport, Belgium, Hungary, and Romania all also got on the winners’ list.


Germans Lead the way at Dutch Para Cycling World Cup Time Trial

Hans-Peter Durst (Photo:

EMMEN, Netherlands — Not far from home, German cyclists won several events at the UCI Para Cycling Road World Cup event in Emmen this weekend.

World No. 1 German Hans-Peter Durst continued his stellar season winning the men’s T3, but it was a close fight as American Ryan Boyle finished just six seconds behind. The podium was rounded out by Spaniard Joan Reinoso Figuerola..

There were two German medalists in the men’s C1 as World No. 3 Michael Teuber claimed gold in 22:48:21. Team mate Erich Winkler was over a minute behind with American William Lister in between the pair.

The home crowd had something to cheer in the Men’s Tandem Time Trial race claimed by Vincent Ter Schure, in something of a shock the world No. 13 managed an upset.  The podium was completed by Spaniard Ignacio Avila Rodriquez who was 45 seconds back and Polish cyclist Przemyslaw Wegner just over a minute behind.

Spaniard Gonzalo Garcia Abella claimed the men’s T1 with ease finishing over a minute clear of his nearest rivals. Outside of the top athletes in the world, without a ranking, Abella stunned the field, with world No. 4 David Geslot forced to settle for third.

Canadian World No. 1 Shelley Gautier won yet another event as she claimed the women’s T1 in 37:41.31 beating out Russian Yulia Sibagatova of Russia. The T2 version of the event was won by world No. 2 Australian Carol Cook in 29:07.70 with two Americas completing the podium one second apart with Jill Walsh second and Monica Sereda third.

Ukraine Gets off to Strong Start at Poland Fencing World Cup

Tetiana Pozniak celebrates her win (Photo: The Bobr Times)

WARSAW, Poland — It’s a short trip to Poland for Ukrainian fencers, and they used that short trip to win four medals in the first two days of competition at the IWAS Wheelchair Fencing World Cup event in Poland on Friday and Saturday.

Continue reading “Ukraine Gets off to Strong Start at Poland Fencing World Cup”

Individual Champions Crowned in Povoa Boccia World Open

Worawut Saengampa of Thailand (Photo: IPC)

POVOA, Portugal — Four individual champions were crowned at the Boccia World Open with the finals played on Friday in Portugal. Great Britain and Thailand leads the medal tally, but the individual champions came from across the world in an entertaining day.

Continue reading “Individual Champions Crowned in Povoa Boccia World Open”

European Championships Impact Taekwondo World Rankings

Photo: IPC

PLOVDIV, Bulgaria — Following the European Championships several athletes from across the continent have moved up in the World Taekwondo Para rankings. With the top four in each classification at the end of the year getting an automatic berth to the 2020 Paralympic Games, the debut of the sport on the biggest stage, athletes are eagerly seeking rankings points.

Continue reading “European Championships Impact Taekwondo World Rankings”

IPC Governance Review Begins


Duane Kale, chairperson of the committee (Photo: Attitude Awards)


BONN, Germany – After the last governance review of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) happened in 2004, a new President in Andrew Parsons has lead to the call for another review. That review, part of Parson’s promises to get elected, will now get underway, with the goal to strengthen the IPC as “a world leading sports organization”.

“When I was elected IPC President, I committed to make the IPC an organisation for all and to fully unlock the potential of the Paralympic Movement,” said Parsons. “In order to achieve this it is vital the IPC has in place the best and most up-to-date sports governance structures so that it is well positioned for further development and growth in the years ahead.”

To secure a genuine review of IPC governance, Parsons will not be taking part in the review, instead the highest ranking IPC member will be Vice President Duane Kale. Eight members will make up the working group, with representatives from all regions, an athlete representative, and a sport representative.

“We are fortunate that we start this review from a position of strength. The current IPC governance structures are far from broken, but since the last governance review in 2004 the IPC and Paralympic Movement have grown beyond all recognition,” said Parsons. “With tremendous growth, comes greater responsibility, interest and scrutiny. Therefore, we must ensure that the IPC is an organisation with best practice and robust governance at its core.”

Kale will be the chairperson of the working group with sports governance expert and lawyer Maria Clarke serving as his vice chair. Europe is represented by the NPC France president Emmanuelle Assmann and NPC Italy president Luca Pancalli, sport is represented by Sabrina Ibanez the President of the Association of Paralympic Sports. Athletes are represented by Canadian Paralympian and lawyer Josh Vander Vies, Asia is represented by NPC Kazakhstan Executive Director Yerlan Suleimenov with IPC CEO Xavier Gonzalez also serving on the group.

“This governance review will go beyond matters of structures, integrity and ethical standards to include other good governance principles such as openness and accountability,” said Kale. “We have a responsibility to the IPC membership and all the Para athletes that we serve to strengthen the IPC’s position as a strong and highly respected world leading sports organisation.”

Work will begin in May and the proposed framework for the review is set to be presented at the IPC Membership Gathering in September. It is expected that the work will be presented at the 2019 IPC General Assembly.

Huig and McFadden Claim Boston Wins Again


The men’s race in Boston (Photo: IPC)


BOSTON – There were familiar names at the top of the results in the Boston Marathon on Monday as Marcel Hug and Tatyana McFadden won the races in difficult conditions on the famous course.

With intense winds and pouring rain, all the athletes in Boston were made to work hard just to finish the course and impressive performances from Hug and McFadden saw them win the legendary marathon yet again.

Early in the race South African Ernst van Dyk and Hug broke away from the pack and took the lead before Hug broke away on Heartbreak Hill. Hug won the race in 1:46:26, which is one of his slowest times on the course thanks to the difficult conditions, claiming his fourth straight title.

“It was very cold all the time, just freezing. I was together with Ernst van Dyk but then in the uphill, I broke away,” said Hug. “It was just so tough, so freezing, I don’t realize what happened now – I’m just very glad I made it.”

Van Dyk did manage to hold on for second place finishing a minute behind Hug with American Daniel Romanchuk finishing a further three minutes back for third place.

The defending champion in the women’s race Manuela Schaer was leading the race in the early stages, but before the halfway mark she was caught by McFadden. The American just pushed on from there claiming a big victory in 2:03:39, her fifth Boston crown.

“I knew today was going to be tough so I started out comfortably, what I could handle down that hill because it was pretty scary but I just kept hammering; kept a consistent speed, really working on the ups and the straight-aways – and I did it,” said McFadden after the race.

It was an American one-two in the women’s with Susannah Scaroni leading in the rest of the field in 2:20:01 while Switzerland managed a second medal of the day with Sandra Graf wrapping up the podium in 2:26:32.