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Triathlon: AWAD now Paratriathlon

2009-03-12 11:34:00

March 11, Athletes With A Disability (AWAD) will now be known as paratriathletes. After meeting with a representative from the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) at the ITU Congress last November in Madrid, and on the wish of the athletes themselves, it was decided that the AWAD category would now be termed paratriathlon. With the new title comes a designated Paratriathlon Committee, which will sit within the ITU family.

“This is an important step forward in our aspirational goal of obtaining programme status for triathlon in the Paralympic Games,” said ITU Vice President Sarah Springman. “Combining the technical expertise of the Paratriathon Committee members with the President’s and Board members’ political experience of lobbying for inclusion in major games should see us prepare a strong candidature file for submission to the IPC later this year.”

The main task of the committee will be to oversee the development of paratriathlon within the triathlon community by growing participation, developing elite performance, evolving events and building profile. Headlining this development will be the inclusion of a paratriathlon category in the London and Gold Coast Dextro Energy Triathlon – ITU World Championship events.

The members of the Paratriathlon Committee are:

Mark Barfield GBR
Jon Beeson USA
Marguerite Christophers NZL
Grant Darby CAN
Alfred Lipp GER
Roberto Menescal BRA
Vijitr Sittinawin THI

Each continent is represented on the committee. ITU staff member Thanos Nikopoulos will work closely with this committee and the ITU Board ensuring implementation of their objectives.

A recent poll of the 122 nations that are members of ITU found that there are over 750 active paratriathletes in the world, from over 40 countries.

(Credit: ITU)