Official website of the Paralympic Movement
Contrast:
High Contrast
Normal Contrast
Enlargement:
Larger Font Size
Default Font Size
Smaller Font Size
Biathlon

Oleksandra Kononova of Ukraine

Oleksandra Kononova of Ukraine

Roman Petushkov of Russia,

Roman Petushkov of Russia,

Paralympic Closing Ceremony to show the impossible is possible

Sochi 2014 will come to a close on Sunday evening with spectacular Closing Ceremony.

The Soch 2014 Closing theme will be Reaching the Impossible The Soch 2014 Closing theme will be Reaching the Impossible © • Sochi 2014
By Sochi 2014

The Closing Ceremony of Russia’s first ever Paralympic Winter Games will take place at the Fisht stadium on Sunday (16 March), illustrating to the world how the Games have proven the seemingly impossible is possible.

The thrilling show is titled “Reaching the Impossible" and will celebrate the magnificent achievements of Paralympic athletes, who have shown the world the impossible is possible through strength of spirit and a relentless pursuit of sporting victory.

Aleksey Chuvashev, a rowing Paralympian and medalist at London 2012 will be a central hero of the Ceremony. Demonstrating the wonders of strength and courage, during a section of the Ceremony, he will climb a rope with only his hands to a height of 15 metres.

The Paralympic Games Closing Ceremony team is led by Head Creative Director Konstantin Ernst and Executive Producer Andrei Nasonovsky, supported by Artistic Director Lida Castelli, Associate Director Doug Jack, and producer of Olympic and Paralympic Games’ Ceremonies Marco Balich.

To the backdrop of the music by Russian composer Alfred Schnittke, the Ceremony will be opened by memorable choreographed pieces performed by members of the Russian Wheelchair Dance Sport Federation together with trapeze artists in distinctive illuminated costumes, who form abstract shapes in the air. This segment is produced by the creative duo of Konstantin Vasiliev, coach of world and European champions in wheelchair dance sport, and Phil Hayes, world-renowned aerial choreographer.

A key theme in the buildup and staging of the Paralympic Winter Games, the Closing Ceremony will once again showcase the principle of inclusiveness in action. Among the top performers on the night will be renowned tenor Jose Carreras, Russian singers Nafset Chenib and Diana Gurtskaya, conductor Aleksey Petrov, pianist Oleg Akkuratov and a dance troupe of 210 Cossacks directed by a choreographer Nikolay Kubar.

Over 460 artists, who for the past months have been working hard rehearsing, will take part in the Closing Ceremony of the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games.

The performance is filled with impressive music, breathtaking choreography, original view and vivid visual displays.

Mikhalina Lysova, Roman Petushkov aiming for more biathlon medals

The long-distance biathlon events across all classes will take place on Day 7 of Sochi 2014.

Mikhalina Lysova Mikhalina Lysova of Russia and her guide Alexey Ivanov celebrate after winning gold in the women's 1km visually impaired cross-country sprint on Day 5 at Sochi 2014. © • Getty Images
By IPC

The Russians have already taken 19 medals in the first two days of biathlon – eight of them gold – and Mikhalina Lysova and Roman Petushkov heavily favoured in their events.

After a day off, the Sochi 2014 Nordic skiing competition will resume at 10:00 (MSK) on Friday (14 March) with the long-distance biathlon events, where the host nation will look to continue their dominance in the sport.

The Russians have already taken 19 medals in the first two days of biathlon – eight of them gold – and Mikhalina Lysova and Roman Petushkov heavily favoured in their events.

In the women’s 12.5km visually impaired race, Lysova will be seeking her third gold of Sochi 2014, with her toughest competition expected to come from teammate Iuliia Budaleeva and Ukraine’s Oksana Shyshkova. Lysova, guided by Alexey Ivanov, is a two-time defending world champion in the event.

"I can't promise that I will continue winning like that, but I will certainly try,” Lysova said after winning the 10km distance earlier in the week.

Petushkov has already won four golds at these Games, making him the biggest individual medal winner at Sochi 2014. On Friday, he will be challenged in the men’s 15km sitting by the event’s world champion Kozo Kubo of Japan and another teammate, Grigory Murygin.

With two Sochi 2014 golds already in her pocket, Russia’s Alena Kaufman is a firm favourite entering the women’s 12.5km standing event. She will go up against Ukrainians Oleksandra Kononova and Iryna Bui, as well as Finland’s Maija Jarvela.

The women’s 12.5km sitting event is expected to be a three-horse race between Germany’s Andrea Eskau and Anja Wicker and Russia’s Svetlana Konovalova. Eskau heads into the race with two golds and a silver already around her neck from Sochi.

After taking bronze in the 7.5km standing, 18-year-old Azat Karachurin returned to top form in the 12.5km to take gold and is hoping to end his Sochi campaign on a high in the men’s 15km standing event. Norway’s Nils-Erik Ulset and Canada’s Mark Arendz are expected to be his toughest challengers.

In the men’s 15km visually impaired event, the rivalry between Russia’s Nikolay Polukhin – guided by Andrey Tokarev – and Ukraine’s Vitaliy Lukyanenko – guided by Borys Babar – is expected to be played out in full.

Cable to host 2015 Nordic Skiing World Championships

180 athletes from 20 countries will gather in Cable, Wisconsin, USA, from 24 January – 1 February 2015.

Tatyana McFadden Nordic After completing a marathon Grand Slam in 2013, the USA's Tatyana McFadden has achieved top-10 finishes at the IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup in the 2013-14 season. © • Luc Percival
By IPC

“I’m so excited to have the 2015 IPC world championships, an elite competition, on home soil”

IPC Nordic Skiing has announced that the 2015 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships will be held in Cable, USA, starting next January and will attract 180 athletes from 20 countries

At a press conference on Thursday (13 March) during the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, representatives of the Local Organising Committee and IPC Nordic Skiing spoke of their desire for the competition to be the biggest and best world championships yet.

In addition, Xavier Gonzalez, the IPC’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “Here in Sochi we have seen some amazing performances by skiers in their quest for Paralympic medals.

“Cable 2015 will be the first major gathering of the world’s best skiers since the Paralympic Winter Games and I am confident that organisers can stage the best World Championships yet by providing the perfect conditions for athletes to inspire and excite the world.”

The competition will feature both cross-country and biathlon races and will take place from 24 January - 1 February. It is being organised locally by the Central Cross Country Ski Association (CXC).

Yuriy Gusev, Executive Director for CXC will serve as the Chairperson of the Local Organising Committee: “It is a privilege for our organisation to host such an event and we are looking forward to welcoming the world, the athletes, coaches and officials to Wisconsin. We had the great honour of hosting two IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup events in 2012 and 2013, and we will do our absolute best to deliver the highest quality event in 2015 and to welcome the world's best here."

The venue for the world championships will be the Telemark Trail System in Cable, a town famed for being the starting point of the American Birkebeiner cross-country skiing marathon or ‘Birkie’, which ends on Main Street in Hayward.

“It is the highest honour for our state to host an event of this international profile,” said Wisconsin’s Governor Scott Walker. “Next year, we look forward to warmly welcoming the world’s best Nordic athletes to one of the best trail systems in the nation.”

American athletes were delighted to learn that the next major competition will be held on home snow.

Multiple marathon major winner and six-time track world champion Tatyana McFadden made the transition from summer sports to Nordic skiing for Sochi 2014, picking up a silver medal in the 1km sprint cross-country sitting on Wednesday (12 March):

"I'm so excited to have the 2015 IPC world championships, an elite competition, on home soil," said McFadden.

"It's a great opportunity for those of us who are competing in Sochi, as well as up and coming athletes to get some major international experience and competition under their belts."

Oksana Masters, who won a rowing bronze medal at London 2012 and now has a silver medal from the women's 12km cross-country sitting at Sochi 2014, said:

“I’m pretty excited for the world championships to be in Cable, because that’s where my Nordic career first started,”

“It was my first World Cup. I was a newbie at the time, so I’m excited to go back to that same course where everything really started, only this time with a lot more experience under my belt.”

The last world championships were held in 2013 in Solleftea, Sweden, where Russian athletes dominated the medals table with 56 golds, including five each across biathlon and cross-country events for Roman Petushkov and Mikhalina Lysova.

Ukraine placed second in the medal tally with seven gold, 11 silver and nine bronze medals, followed by Germany with three gold, one silver and two bronze medals.

Day 4 | Biathlon moment of the day | Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games

© •

Gold medal: Roman PETUSHKOV - Russia Silver medal: Alexey BYCHENOK - Russia Bronze medal: Grigory MURYGIN - Russia To see the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games schedule, results, medals table and details of where to watch on TV, please visit http://www.paralympic.org. For details on Paralympic classification, please visit: http://www.paralympic.org/classification

Men's 12.5km middle distance biathlon sitting Victory Ceremony | Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games

© •

Victory ceremony for Men's 12.5km middle distance biathlon sitting Gold medal: Roman PETUSHKOV - Russia Silver medal: Alexey BYCHENOK - Russia Bronze medal: Grigory MURYGIN - Russia To see the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games schedule, results, medals table and details of where to watch on TV, please visit http://www.paralympic.org. For details on Paralympic classification, please visit: http://www.paralympic.org/classification

Women's 10km middle distance biathlon sitting Victory Ceremony | Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games

© •

Victory ceremony for Women's 10km middle distance biathlon sitting Gold medal: Anja WICKER - Germany Silver medal: Svetlana KONOVALOVA - Russia Bronze medal: Lyudmyla PAVLENKO - Ukraine To see the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games schedule, results, medals table and details of where to watch on TV, please visit http://www.paralympic.org. For details on Paralympic classification, please visit: http://www.paralympic.org/classification

Roman Petushkov picks up third Sochi 2014 gold

Russia took home all the medals in the men's 12.5km sitting biathlon on Day 4 of the Paralympics.

Alexey Bychenok, Roman Petushkov and Grigory Murygin Russia's Alexey Bychenok (left), Roman Petushkov (centre) and Grigory Murygin celebrate medalling in the men's 12.5km sitting biathlon event on Day 4 of Sochi 2014. © • Getty Images
By IPC

"I can't believe I won .It's my second gold medal and it's great because it's a home Paralympic Games." "I always feel doubt, but everybody tells me I can do it. I hope I will win gold in another race."

Russia swept the podium in the men’s 12.5km sitting biathlon on Tuesday (11 March) at the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games, as Roman Petushkov furthered his winning streak by taking his third gold in as many events.

Clocking in at 34:48.8, the 36-year-old has quickly become the host nation’s face of Sochi 2014 after having entered these Games with eight world titles, but no Paralympic titles.

Petushkov’s teammates, Alexey Bychenok (35:29.7) and Grigory Murygin (35:59.6), took silver and bronze to complete an all-Russian podium.

"Today I spoke to the guys and told them that we would share the podium,” Petushkov said. “It was a joke, but now it's true.

"I don't think that the weather is bad. It's Russian weather, especially for biathlon. We are like soldiers and can race in any weather, it doesn't matter.”

Germany’s 22-year-old Anja Wicker won her first career Paralympic gold, taking first place in the women’s 10km sitting biathlon in 32:54.4.

"We played some billiards yesterday to relax. Apparently, I wasn't too good at it so I saved that for today,” Wicker said after the race.

"I need some time to realise what just happened. I kept looking at the results board in the stadium but I couldn't believe that it was my name up there in first position.

"I kept thinking there has to be someone else who will finish ahead of me. To be honest, I didn't even expect a medal today, let alone the golden one."

Russia’s Svetlana Konovalova (33:36.7) picked up her third medal of Sochi 2014 and second silver, and Ukraine’s Lyudmyla Pavlenko (34:22.6) took home the bronze. That left the race favourite, Ukraine’s seven-time biathlon world champion Olena Iurkovksa (34:49.2), in fourth place.

The women’s 10km standing title went to Russia’s Alena Kaufman (29:57.1), who now has two golds in Sochi, while Ukraine’s Oleksandara Kononova (30:33.7) took silver and another Russian, Natalia Bratiuk (30:57.6), finished in bronze-medal position.

"I can't believe I won,” Kaufman said. “It's my second gold medal and it's great because it's a home Paralympic Games."

"I always feel doubt, but everybody tells me I can do it. I hope I will win gold in another race."

In the men’s 12.5km standing, 18-year-old Azat Karachurin (29:30.0) pulled a surprise by winning gold ahead of Norway’s three-time world champion Nils-Erik Ulset (30:24.6) and Canada’s world champion Mark Arendz (30:31.0).

The host nation’s Mikhalina Lysova (30:11.5), guided by Alexey Ivanov, picked up her second medal of the Games, taking gold in the women’s 10km visually impaired biathlon ahead of teammate Iuliia Budaleeva (30:38.9). Ukraine’s Oksana Shyshkova (35:01.4) grabbed her first Paralympic medal, taking the bronze.

In the day’s final competition, Ukraine’s Vitaliy Lukyanenko (31:04.0) raced to gold with guide Borys Babar in the men’s 7.5km visually impaired event to increase his collection of Paralympic titles to three. Russia’s Nikolay Polukhin took silver, with Belarus’ Vasili Shaptsiaboi (31:59.0) grabbing the bronze.

Alexey Bychenok, Roman Petushkov and Grigory Murygin

Alexey Bychenok, Roman Petushkov and Grigory Murygin