World Para Swimming has announced that a World Series competition will be introduced in 2017, offering para athletes the chance to compete in a dedicated circuit for the first time. This addition follows IPC Swimming’s rebranding to World Para Swimming.
IPC’s decision to rebrand was made in an effort to make it clearer to the public which sport the IPC is responsible for and to make each Para sport more distinctive from their Olympic equivalents. Furthermore, the rebranding also ensures that the Agitos, the Paralympic symbol, and the word Paralympic are only used in connection with the Paralympic Games.
The World Series will bring together some of the biggest global competitions, while giving athletes a chance to compete before the World Championships. The 2017 World Series will begin in March in Copenhagen, Denmark, and move to Sao Paulo, Brazil. The next stops will be in Sheffield, Great Britain and Indianapolis, before concluding in Berlin, Germany in July.
After a successful Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, the addition of a World Series competition represents change and progression within Para swimming. The World Series will also be used as a platform for carrying out technical and classification research, which was previously carried out at the regional or World Championships level.
In addition, the World Series will provide a platform for the National Paralympic Committees (NPCs) and National Federations (NFs) to better plan and develop their own programs.
In an interview with Para Swimming, IPC Summer Sports director Ryan Montgomery said, “At Rio 2016 Para swimming was one of the most talked about and well attended sports and we are confident that building a World Series will bring benefits for everyone with an interest in the sport. As well as offering fans and the media more opportunities to follow the world’s best athletes, it also allows us to enhance Para swimming in other areas such as classification, competition management, education and research at each event location.”
Full details can be found here.