The second leg of the 2023 Paralympic Swimming World Series will start on Thursday 9 March in the Olympic swimming pool of Lignano Sabbiadoro located inside the Bella Italia Village. The circuit involves a total of eight countries.
International membership continues to grow in terms of quality and quantity: this year the event will be valid for the qualifications to the World Cup in Manchester 2023 and the Paralympics in Paris 2024. There will be 50 top athletes in the international ranking and all the Italian athletes who participated in the Tokyo 2021 Paralympics, with the exception of Antonio Fantin and Arjola Trimi for health problems.
Overall in the pool there will be almost 300 swimmers of 44 different nations spanning 4 continents. The team with more participants is Italy with 65 registered athletes, followed by Poland, Argentina, France and Ukraine.
Statement from Craig Nicholson, Head of World Para Swimming
“Lignano Sabbiadoro joined the World Series in 2018 and quickly established itself as one of the most exciting Para swimming events in the world. It has become a regular stop to athletes from across all continents where they meet the best of Italy, the team that topped the medals table in the last two World Championships. This will be the first time we come to Lignano under the new format of the Citi Para Swimming World Series, which allowed us to announce the 2023 and 2024 calendars in advance with the support of the Local Organising Committee.”
At 11.00 this morning was held at the City Hall of Lignano Sabbiadoro the press conference to present the 2023 edition of the Paraswimming World Series.
Laura Giorgi, Mayor of Lignano Sabbiadoro:
Between FINP, City of Lignano and Bella Italia Village there is a friendship and a long-standing collaboration. A great praise to the organizers and swimmers, who are the stars of this event and ambassadors of sport at all levels and in its purest essence. An example for everyone. Lignano wants to be more and more the City of sport and sport tourism, and for this we are committed and we will engage more and more in the future.
Roberto Valori, President of Italian paralympic swimming federation:
We are very happy to be back in Lignano, with an important number of swimmers that we will do our best to honor thanks to an organization now well-established. We have a great national team. We are honored by the proximity and collaboration with the International paralympic committee both nationally and locally and I want to thank the whole Local organizing comittee working group, especially those who do not appear on the front pages but work in silence to keep the whole movement going. We look forward to the World Cup in Manchester and we are, of course, working hard to make it to the 2024 Paris Games.
Daniele Zotti, President of the Local Organizing Committee:
It is true that, having reached the fifth edition, the organizational machine is widely tested, but it is equally true that without the continuous commitment of the technicians and volunteers everything would be much more complicated. We are proud to note that it is the second most popular stage of these World Series, with 320 athletes in the pool for the competition and another hundred for the absolute winter Italian Championships. Sport with everyone and for everyone, and for this I have to thank the local authorities and the Bella Italia Village for their continuous support.
Giovanni De Piero, President of the CIP Friuli Venezia Giulia:
Friuli Venezia Giulia has achieved a leading position in the Paralympic sport, with numerous events that precede and follow these World Series, thanks to an extensive network of facilities fully equipped for the optimal reception of people with disabilities.
Enrico Testa, Head of Italian paralympic swimming federation:
For the staff of the National Teams this is yet another organizational and sporting success. In these days we are classifying dozens of new athletes on the international scene, to further expand our movement, that can represent an effective replacement for the older swimmers of the team. We are already working for the Los Angeles 2028 and Brisbane 2032 Games and we are filled with positive tension because we want to do well and we are eager to confront the elite of international swimming: in Lignano is represented more than 50% of the paralympic swimming movement, and we aim to achieve more great results.
Also present were the member of the COL Francesco Bettella, the CEO of Bella Italia Village Federico Delaini. Also present were the Councillor for Sport Giovanni Iermano, the director of the EFA Village Ada Salgarella, the marketing manager Eloisa Bortolan and representatives of various voluntary associations in the area.