Marcel Hug19 January 1986 Nottwil, Switzerland
- LATEST TRIUMPHS:
- 2015 IPC Athletics World Championships Doha - Silver: 5,000m T54; Bronze: 800m T54
- 2014 IPC Athletics World Championships
- 2013 IPC Athletics World Championships - Gold: Marathon, 10,000m, 5,000m, 1,500m, 400m; Silver: 800m T54
- London 2012 Paralympics - Silver: 800m T54 and marathon T54
- 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships - Gold: 10,000m; Silver: 400m, 800m, 1,500m and 5,000m T54
Hug is the latest Swiss wheelchair racing talent following in the tracks of all-time greats Franz Nietlispach and Heinz Frei.
The ‘Swiss Silver Bullet’ went in to the 2015 IPC Athletics World Championships having won no fewer than five global titles two years previously in Lyon, France.
Victory in the 400m, 1,500m, 5,000m, 10,000m and marathon (T54) in 2013 meant Hug quickly became the man to beat, having lost out the previous year at London 2012 to Great Britain’s quadruple Paralympic champion David Weir.
Further glory at the 2014 IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea, Great Britain, only served to cement his place at the top of the rankings. In the absence of Weir, he won the 800m, 1,500m and 5,000m.
Competition at last year’s World Championships in Doha, Qatar, was tough however and Hug found himself outraced by the likes of Thailand’s Rawat Tana, who took world gold in the 1,500m and 5,000m. Hug had to make do with one bronze (800m) and one silver medal (5,000m).
Earlier in the year he had been forced to withdraw from the defence of his world marathon title after suffering a puncture during the Virgin London Marathon – world gold in 2015 was not to be.
His first Paralympic Games were in Athens in 2004 when, aged just 18-years-old, he won 800m and 1,500m bronze He also made the finals of the 400m and 1,500m.
Two years later he struck 10,000m gold at the IPC Athletics World Championships in the Netherlands, adding 400m, 800m and 5,000m silver to his tally.
By his own admission Beijing 2008 was a disappointing experience. His best finish was fourth place in the 5,000m. But Hug bounced back in emphatic style in 2010 smashing four world records in four days at a meeting in Nottwil, Switzerland, that summer.
He was the man to beat going into the 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships in New Zealand, an event which would see him compete in all track events from the 400m through to the 10,000m.
Unfortunately for Hug, he came up against Weir, a man spurred on by losing his world records the previous year.
Weir put on a tactical master class in the 800m, 1,500m and 5,000m to take gold ahead of Hug, who only managed one gold - in the 10,000m, a race that did not feature his great rival.
Events in Doha last year brought home the fact that it is no longer a battle between the Briton and the Swiss. Others are stepping in to the limelight now too, but don’t bet against Hug making the headlines come Rio in September.
His world records in the 800m, 1,500m, 5,000m and 10,000m – all set in 2010 – still stand; defeat in 2015 will not stop Hug coming back stronger and even more determined than before.
- Follow us on Facebook
- Follow us on Twitter
- Tweets by @IPCAthletics