The International Federation for Intellectual impairment Sport (World Intellectual Impairment Sport) has notified countries that the location of the 2017 World Intellectual Impairment Sport Swimming Championships may change if the Local Organising Committee (LOC) cannot produce crucial documentation relating to the competition pool in Aguascalientes, Mexico.
World Intellectual Impairment Sport requires the documentation as part of the hosting agreement with the Federación Mexicana de Deportistas Especiales FEMEDE), as it is a condition of the sanctioning and recognition of results by World Intellectual Impairment Sport and other international sport bodies.
The situation arose when the LOC recently requested permission to move the venue from Morelia, the original host city in the bid document, to Aguascalientes. A subsequent site visit revealed that documents that guaranteed the proposed pool was suitable for major international competitions were not available.
FEMEDE had assured World Intellectual Impairment Sport that the paperwork would be available by Wednesday (12 July), however key documents have still not been submitted. World Intellectual Impairment Sport may now be forced to find a new host for the competition.
The World Intellectual Impairment Sport Swimming Championships are the biggest and most important competition for swimmers with intellectual impairments in 2017.
Dave Harman, World Intellectual Impairment Sport’ Sport Director for swimming, attended the site visit in late June.
“We are very keen to keep the Championships in Mexico, as it would be a landmark event,” Harman said.
“The first World Intellectual Impairment Sport event of its kind to take place in the Americas, it offers many benefits for the reach and profile of swimming for athletes with intellectual impairments, for the local community and for the country and region as a whole.
“The bid and site visit showed the huge potential and ambition of the LOC, with excellent plans for the infrastructure, facilities for the athletes, media and broadcasting.
“However, whilst I was hugely encouraged by the plans of the LOC in many areas, crucial elements of their preparations fell short of World Intellectual Impairment Sport’ standards. Primarily I was disappointed to learn that there was no certification that the newly proposed competition pool meets the requirements of a major international event, as laid out in the hosting contract.”
Following the site visit World Intellectual Impairment Sport suspended entries to give the LOC time to produce the documentation.
“FEMEDE were able to provide us with a date of when the pool would be assessed, but that has now passed,” Harman continued. “Each delay takes us closer to the Championships, which is not ideal.
“To ensure the quality of the event and in the interests of the athletes taking part, we may have no choice but to remove the right to host the competition from a very capable LOC if the necessary paperwork is not received.”
World Intellectual Impairment Sport represents more than 250,000 athletes with intellectual impairments around the world. We give elite athletes the chance to compete at an international level and on the Paralympic stage. But we cannot continue our work towards the inclusion of the world’s biggest impairment group in sport and society without your support.
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