First Champions Crowned at Zakopane 2024, First Virtus European Winter Games

History was made in Zakopane, Poland, as the inaugural Virtus Winter Games crowned its champions, marking a significant moment in skiing and indoor rowing history. Athletes from across Europe and select nations worldwide showcased their remarkable skill and determination in the thrilling competitions, highlighting the talent and resilience of participants with intellectual impairments.

SKIING: Super Giant Slalom (SGS)

Winners from II1 Slalom races at Zakopane 2024. Photo Credit: Sprawni-Razem.

In the II1 Women’s Super Giant Slalom, Mélanie De Bona from France secured the top spot with an impressive time of 43.64 seconds. Amilia Selznick representing the USA followed closely behind, achieving a time of 45.97 seconds, just 2.33 seconds behind the leader and Tamami Baba of Japan finished third with a time of 46.81 seconds, trailing by 3.17 seconds.

Aoshi Kanazawa from Japan claimed the top position in the II1 Men’s category with an impressive time of 40.74 seconds. Thomas Girard of France secured second place with a time of 41.05 seconds, just 0.31 seconds behind the leader. Yusuke Kizuki, also from Japan, took the third spot with a time of 42.76 seconds, trailing by 2.02 seconds.

Winners from II2 Slalom races at Zakopane 2024. Photo Credit: Sprawni-Razem.

In the II2 Women’s category, Austrians dominated the podium with Anna-Sophie Friedl from Austria (49.14 seconds) claiming the gold and Stephanie Schlömmer (51.09 seconds) securing herself a silver. Bea-Anna Westerstrahle of Finland finished third with a time of 59.90 seconds, trailing by 10.76 seconds.

Antoni Wiercioch from Poland claimed the top spot in the II2 Men’s category with a remarkable time of 47.71 seconds. Markus Grameiser of Austria secured second place with a time of 48.31 seconds, 0.60 seconds behind the leader. Klemens Zieba, also from Poland, took the third position with a time of 49.20 seconds, trailing by 1.49 seconds.

Winners from II3 Slalom races at Zakopane 2024. Photo Credit: Sprawni-Razem.

In the II3 Women’s category, Aleksandra Andrejko from Poland secured the top spot with an impressive time of 42.90 seconds. Elizabeth Whitehouse representing the USA finished second with a time of 57.03 seconds, trailing by 14.13 seconds. Aliye Zeynep Bingül from Turkey took the third position with a time of 59.36 seconds, trailing by 16.46 seconds.

Axel Bringdal of France claimed victory in the II3 Men’s category with a remarkable time of 40.95 seconds. Ange Cazorla, also from France, secured second place with a time of 41.82 seconds, 0.87 seconds behind the leader. Palmer Lyons representing the USA finished third with a time of 42.29 seconds, trailing by 1.34 seconds.


Awe-inspiring performances unfolded in the 500m women’s race. Adriana Czekaj of Poland surged to victory in the II1 division, clocking a lightning-fast time of 1:51.5, closely pursued by Italy’s Marta Piccininno at 1:52.8. France’s Clémence Wattecampps showcased her finesse, clinching third place with a time of 1:54.3.

Indoor Rowing actions at VESG 2024, Zakppane. Photo Credit: Sprawni-Razem

The intensity continued as Marta Casetta of Italy dominated the II2 category, crossing the finish line in 2:31.9, trailed by compatriot Margherita Merlo at 2:37.5. Meanwhile, Nadège Dathy of France showcased sheer determination, securing third place in the II2 division with a time of 2:45.2.

In the men’s category, France’s Damien Touchagues left spectators in awe with his stellar performance, conquering the II1 division in 1:29.3. Italy’s Francesco Saverio Di Donato closely trailed behind at 1:29.5, while Giulio Guerra exhibited his prowess, finishing third in the II1 division with a time of 1:31.4.

The excitement soared as Andrea Appendino of Italy dominated the II2 category, showcasing extraordinary skill with a top spot finish in 1:53.9. Lorenzo Sforza of Italy followed closely at 1:56.7, while Dylan Lorec Berjuin of France delivered a commendable performance, securing third place in the II2 division with a time of 1:59.9.

Not to be outdone, Théodore Chatel of France emerged victorious in the II3 category, setting the pace with a stellar time of 1:28.3. Lorenzo Mazzoletti of Italy showcased his strength, securing second place with a time of 1:29.1, rounding off a day of remarkable achievements and fierce competition.

In the thrilling 4×500-meter relay, Team France showcased their dominance with a remarkable time of 7:01.7, led by the stellar performances of Clementine Berland, Clémence Wattecampps, Ehenne Kolialis, and Damien Touchagues. Italy followed closely behind, securing second place with a time of 7:12.1, led by Francesco Saverio Di Donato, Giulio Guerra, Serena Giorgetti, and Marta Piccininno. The combined efforts of Poland and Portugal earned them third place with a time of 7:22.8, with Jorge Sousa, Adriana Czekaj, Vasco Vicente, and Agata Pitura showcasing commendable teamwork. In the 4×500 II 2 category, Italy continued their winning streak with a time of 9:12.5, while Team France secured second place with a time of 9:37.1.

Live streams of all sports will be available on Virtus social media and YouTube channels.

Stay updated with event highlights at Virtus FacebookTwitter and Instagram on all competition days between 3rd March to 8th March. Event information can be accessed from the Virtus European Winter Games website.

Inaugural Virtus European Winter Games Declared Open In Zakopane, Poland

The first-ever Virtus European Winter Games commenced today in the picturesque city of Zakopane, Poland, hailed as the ‘winter capital’ and a haven for skiing enthusiasts. Athletes from Italy, Australia, Sweden, Turkiye, Poland, France, Austria, USA, Portugal, Spain, Finland and Japan will be competing at the games.

In attendance were esteemed figures such as the President of Polish Paralympic Committee- Łukasz Szeliga,Chairman of the Town City Council of Zakopane- Jan Gluc, Founder and Honorary President of Sprawni-Razem, Zenon Jaszczur, President of Sprawni-Razem- Dariusz Mosakowski, Virtus President- Marc Truffaut and the Virtus governing board members along with the delegates from the competition nations.

President Szeliga expressed his appreciation for the event, emphasizing the potential for closer collaboration between Virtus and the Paralympic movement.

“This is a historic event, and I hope the relationship between Virtus and the Paralympic movement grows, leading to more such events.

President of Polish Paralympic Committee- Łukasz Szeliga (L) and Chairman of the Town City Council of Zakopane- Jan Gluc (R)

He also encouraged athletes, highlighting the ethos of the Paralympic movement.

Remember that the most important thing is that you embody the idea of the Paralympic movement, that impossible doesn’t exist.”

The festivities were enhanced by a captivating performance by the Klimki younger Group, showcasing regional folk dance.

Klimki younger Group performaing at Zakopane 2024

Virtus President Truffaut commended the organizing committee for their remarkable efforts,

This event is very important as it’s the first Winter European Games, marking a historic moment for Virtus. It signifies our commitment to greater inclusion in the Paralympic movement and Winter Paralympic Games.

Extending a warm welcome to the elite skiers with intellectual impairment returning to Zakopane after six years, the President of the Local Organizing Committee, Sprawni-Razem, Dariusz Mosakowski, expressed his heartfelt sentiments, saying,

‘I warmly welcome all the athletes and delegates back to our city, Zakopane. May you all achieve the highest rankings and enjoy the event.'”

The event will offer medal events in Alpine Skiing, 3×3 Basketball, Indoor Rowing and Futsal. Despite Nordic skiing being an integral part of the event, unforeseen challenges arose. Regrettably, adverse weather conditions and melting snow on the tracks forced the cancellation of the competitions.

Live streams of all sports will be available on Virtus social media and YouTube channels.

Stay updated with event highlights at Virtus FacebookTwitter and Instagram on all competition days between 3rd March to 8th March. Event information can be accessed from the Virtus European Winter Games website.

Second Live Virtus Para-Dressage Competition Is Coming To Winchester, UK

We are thrilled to unveil the highly anticipated upcoming second edition of the Virtus para-dressage competition, set to grace Winchester, Great Britain later this year. Following the resounding success of its inaugural edition held at the Global Games last year, this upcoming event is poised to elevate the standards of excellence in para-dressage.

The event is scheduled to take place from 15th to 19th July.

Organized by Virtus in collaboration with Sparsholt College Equestrian Centre, recognized as one of the premier riding venues in the UK, the event will span over two days and offer competition for II1, II2, and II3 riders.

Sparsholt’s world-class facilities, including stabling for up to 66 horses and Olympic-standard indoor and outdoor arenas, ensure an unparalleled experience for both participants and spectators alike. Notably, Sparsholt regularly hosts affiliated and unaffiliated competitions, further attesting to its esteemed status in the equestrian community.

Uta Rindfleisch, our esteemed Sports Director, calls upon all members to rally behind this event.

“The Virtus Equestrian Committee is dedicatedly crafting a comprehensive program of live competition, culminating in the highly anticipated Global Games 2027 – recently announced to be hosted in Cairo, Egypt. These events, complementing our existing video competitions, signify our commitment to providing opportunities for our growing team of riders worldwide. We are thrilled that Sparsholt College will serve as the venue for this fantastic endeavour.”

For further details about the competition, visit Virtus events page. The official entry pack is available here.

Join us as we celebrate the spirit of para-dressage and showcase the incredible talent within our community!

Cancellation of 2024 Nordic competition

Virtus has been informed that, regretfully, the nordic skiing competition at the 2024 World Championships/European Winter Games has been cancelled due to the unfavourable snow conditions in Zakopane.

The LOC have made all efforts to avoid this decision, which is disappointing for athletes, teams and everyone connected to the event, however it is unavoidable due to the conditions and weather forecast for the coming days.

For refunds and team logistical matters, please contact the organising committee. Virtus and the hosts apologise for this inconvenience and appreciate your understanding.

Please note that the alpine skiing events are not at risk, with good snow conditions in the higher mountain region.

2027 Virtus Global Games Heads to Cairo, Egypt

Virtus is delighted to announce that the prestigious seventh edition of the Global Games, scheduled for 2027, will be hosted in Cairo, Egypt. This marks a significant milestone as we prepare to welcome thousands of athletes from around the world to this international multi-sport event.

Congratulations to the Egyptian Sports Federation for Intellectual Disabilities (ESFID), Virtus Egypt Member, for their successful bid to host the quadrennial Games. Virtus President, Marc Truffaut, expressed excitement about the journey ahead, highlighting the upcoming World Championships in 2024 and 2025, Regional Games in 2026, and the pinnacle event, the Virtus Global Games 2027 (GG2027).

The GG2027 presents an exciting opportunity to showcase new and emerging talent. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to Ms. Amal Mobadda, President of Virtus Egypt, and her team for securing the bid, and we wish them the best of luck in the planning process,” said Mr. Truffaut.

The Virtus Global Games, held every four years, serves as a pathway to qualification for the Paralympic Games. Looking ahead to LA2028 and beyond, Virtus is committed to expanding the inclusion of events for athletes with intellectual impairments.

ESFID, as part of the Egyptian Paralympic Committee, showcased world-class sporting venues, the rich cultural heritage of Cairo, and the unwavering support of government and sporting organizations, ensuring that GG2027 will be an exceptional event.

Ms. Amal Mobadda, President of Virtus Egypt and Virtus Africas Region, emphasized Egypt’s commitment to promoting inclusion and celebrating athletic excellence.

It is an honour to host this world-class event in Cairo, where culture and elite sports will converge. We are ready to welcome the best international athletes and provide them with a truly memorable experience in November 2027,” said Ms. Mobadda.

The Virtus Global Games aims to challenge perceptions and promote a more inclusive world, spotlighting the athleticism, resilience, and strength of athletes with intellectual impairments on a global stage.

Stay tuned for more information about the sports events, eligibility criteria, and competition period in November 2027.

Ukraine Leads The Final Medal Count at Reims 2024

The culminating day of the 2024 Virtus World and European Indoor Athletics in Reims, France, witnessed pivotal moments that reshaped the standings.

Liudmyla Danylina of Ukraine showcased unparalleled prowess, clinching gold in both the 800m and 3,000m events, solidifying her dominance in indoor track athletics.

In the Women’s 200m, Yuliia Shuliar of Ukraine sprinted to victory with a blistering time of 25.03 seconds, securing gold. Aysel Önder and Reyhan Tasdelen from Turkey claimed silver and bronze, respectively. Meanwhile, in the Men’s 200m, De Rodriguez Ramirez of Spain claimed gold with an impressive time of 22.37 seconds, closely followed by Igor Oliveira from Portugal and Joel Reinoldsson from Sweden.

In the II1 800m events, Liudmyla Danylina continued her dominance, securing gold in the Women’s category, while Sandro Baessa of Portugal emerged victorious in the Men’s event. Reyhan Tasdelen and Virginie Dreux from Turkey and France respectively secured silver and bronze in womens, while Gael Geffroy and Arthur Bellitto from France claimed silver and bronze in the Men’s 800m.

Danylina continued her winning streak in the 3,000m, claiming gold for Ukraine, with Cristi Pinto Pereira of Portugal securing gold in the Men’s event. Iryna Kandyba of Ukraine and Pavlo Voluikevych secured silver in their respective events, while Anna Bodziony and Adria Parras Alvarez clinched bronze.

Ukrainian athletes dominating podium. Photo Credit: Geoffrey Wahlen/FFSA

In the High Jump events, Ruslana Muravska of Ukraine and Kyrylo Bezverkhov secured gold for their country, with Ana Filipe and Lenine Cunha from Portugal claiming silver. Fatma Damla Altin of Turkey, Alexander Lilliesköld of Sweden, and Mykhailo Bilenko of Ukraine secured bronze in their respective events.

Ukraine’s dominance extended to the Women’s 4x400m Relay, securing gold, while the men’s team from Portugal emerged victorious.

In the team events, Portugal topped the men’s standings, followed by Ukraine and Turkey. Ukraine led the women’s standings, with Turkey and France following suit.

With an impressive haul of 13 gold, 7 silver, and 4 bronze medals, Ukraine secured the top spot on the final medal tally, showcasing their dominance in the competition. Portugal secured second place with 9 gold, 7 silver, and 16 bronze medals, while Spain claimed third place with 7 gold, 2 silver, and 5 bronze medals.

Full results can be accessed from Virtus website.

Record-breaking Performances and Medal Triumphs continues at Day-2 of Reims 2024

The second day of the 2024 Virtus World and European Indoor Athletics Championship in Reims, France commenced with an electrifying start, setting the stage for a day of remarkable performances.

Aysel Önder of Turkey left an indelible mark on the competition by breaking the Women’s II1 400m event record with an astonishing time of 57.454 seconds, captivating the crowd and securing her place in Virtus World history as a true champion.

In the Men’s II1 Shot Put, Maksym Koval of Ukraine astounded spectators with a monumental throw, achieving a remarkable distance of 17.40 meters and setting a new standard for the event.

Virtus WR breakers: Aysel Önder and Maksym Koval

Athletes from Bulgaria, France, Turkey, and Ukraine excelled, claiming multiple medals and showcasing their exceptional talent and determination on the global stage.

Aleksandar Asenov of Bulgaria demonstrated his dominance by clinching gold in both the Men’s Shot Put (7Kg) and Men’s Shot Put (4Kg) events.

Nicolas Virapin from France soared to victory in the Men’s Long Jump, adding a silver medal in the Men’s Shot Put (4Kg) event to his impressive haul.

Lucas Tandrayen, also representing France, showcased his skill with a silver in the Men’s Shot Put (4Kg) and a bronze in the same event, highlighting his versatility.

Turkey’s Reyhan Tasdelen impressed with a bronze in the Women’s Long Jump and another bronze in the Women’s 200m race, displaying her versatility as an athlete.

Ukraine’s Olha Zazuliak demonstrated her athleticism by competing in both the Women’s Long Jump and Women’s 200m events, showcasing her dedication to excellence.

Portugal maintained its lead in the medal tally with a total of 12 medals, including 5 gold, 5 silver, and 2 bronze. Ukraine followed closely with 10 medals, while Turkey secured 9 medals in total.

For full results, visit the Virtus website for comprehensive information on the championship.

Watch the highlights from day-2 of reims 2024 below. Feel free to share, follow and subscribe to our channel!

Portuguese Athletes Dominate Podium on Opening Day of Reims 2024

The 2024 Virtus World and European Indoor Athletics Championship kicked off today in the picturesque city of Reims, France, with an electrifying display of athleticism.

On the opening day, athletes representing Portugal dominated the competition, securing three out of the ten titles up for grabs.

Paralympic Bronze medallist and Virtus ambassador, Lenine Cunha, soared to victory in the Men’s II1 Triple jump, outperforming contenders Matheo Jean Gilbert and Johan Roigt of France.

Athletes in action at Reims 2024. Photo Credit: Geoffrey Wahlen/FFSA

In the II1 Men’s 60m event, Igor Oliveira blazed to the gold medal, leaving competitors Joel Reinoldsson of Sweden and Haroun Khalifa of France in his wake.

Meanwhile, in the Women’s II1 category, Ana Filipe clinched the gold medal by outshining Esra Bayrak of Turkey and Olha Zazuliak of Ukraine, who settled for silver and bronze respectively.

Ukrainian athletes, Yuliia Shuliar and Mikhail Bilenko, showcased their prowess by claiming gold in the Women’s II1 60m and Pentathlon events.

French contender Nicolas Virapin demonstrated his dominance with a double victory, securing gold in both the II2 Long Jump and Triathlon events.

Not to be outdone, Bulgarian athlete Aleksandar Asenov (II2) asserted his dominance with two title wins today in the Shot put and 60m events.

Fatma Damla Altin (TUR) clinched Turkey’s first gold medal in the Pentathlon event.

Full results can be accessed from the Virtus website.

2024 Virtus World and European Indoor Athletics Declared Open

The 2024 Virtus World and European Indoor Athletics commenced today in Reims, France, amidst a vibrant display of local programs and an exuberant athlete’s parade. The event concludes on 24th February.

Nations such as Belgium, France, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Ukraine, Sweden, Spain, and Turkey are set to compete fiercely for top honours in this esteemed competition.

Reims, the “city of coronations,” is the 12th largest city in France, with 182,000 residents. It’s in the Grand Est region, serving as a sub-prefecture of the Marne department. Notable for its UNESCO World Heritage sites, including Notre-Dame Cathedral, Reims offers rich historical exploration. Nature enthusiasts can enjoy walks in Montagne de Reims Regional Nature Park, famous for Champagne vineyards. Festivals like music events, the Christmas market (3rd largest in France), and Johannine celebrations provide cultural vibrancy year-round.

In sports, Reims excels nationally in basketball, hockey, water polo, and football, notably led by Stade de Reims, six-time French champions. The annual Run in Reims race attracts over 15,000 participants. Additionally, Reims will play a part in the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, hosting the Olympic flame and select delegations

Marc Truffaut, President of Fédération Française du Sport Adapté, extended a heartfelt greeting to all participants and technical committees. He remarked,

We are thrilled to welcome you all to Reims, especially in this exciting Paralympic Year with the upcoming games in Paris, France. Your performances here in the next few days could be the stepping stone to your success in September.”

Echoing Truffaut’s sentiments, Jose Pereira, the Virtus Sport Director for Athletics, added,

Today marks the beginning of an incredible journey for all of us. With the spirit of sportsmanship and determination, let us embrace the challenges ahead and showcase the true essence of athletics.”

With anticipation building, Pereira officially declared the event open, setting the stage for days filled with thrilling displays of athleticism and camaraderie. As the world’s gaze turns to Reims, spectators and participants alike eagerly await the inspiring moments that will unfold on the track and field.

Call for new memberships

At the 2023 Virtus General Assembly, the membership of several organisations was ceased following several years where membership obligations were not met.

In accordance with the Membership policy, Virtus is inviting new organisations to come forward to take the membership in the following nations:

  • Brunei
  • Central Africa Republic
  • Chad
  • Honduras
  • San Marino
  • South Africa

Membership applications can be submitted using the form available on the Virtus website, however we encourage all interested parties to contact us at for an informal discussion prior to submitting an application.

Over the last 10 years, membership of Virtus has continued to set records and now stands at an all time high of 84 nations and 11 other organisations including International Federations. Marc Truffaut, Virtus President said, “Each year the Virtus family grows and we reach more athletes in more nations. We look forward to hearing from organisations in the above countries – or indeed from elsewhere across the world where Virtus is currently not represented – in order that we can continue to support more people with an intellectual impairment globally”.

Visit here details of Virtus membership and current member organisation.