“No matter what the impairment, be under no illusions that what you witness here next month is elite sport at its very best with some great rivalries playing out between the swimmers."
Mr. Gaétan Tardif, President of the Canadian Paralympic Committee, accompanied by Mr. Richard Deschamps, member of the City of Montreal Executive Committee, responsible for sports and leisure, infrastructures and procurement, revealed the programming for the upcoming IPC Swimming World Championships to be held at parc Jean-Drapeau from August 12 -18, 2013. This international sports event will bring together 500 elite athletes from 56 countries. Moreover, these Championships will showcase renowned Paralympic athletes such as Benoit Huot and Valérie Grand'Maison.
"The majority of swimmers who lit up TV screens around the world last summer winning medals and smashing world records will be here in Montreal," explained Ms. Jane D. Blaine, Chairperson of IPC's Swimming Sports Technical Committee. "In fact, a record 56 countries will be sending around 500 swimmers to this event to compete in 170 medal events over seven days of competition. This event, a first of its kind in North America, is of particular importance to the IPC for many reasons. Firstly, it will give Canadians a taste of elite para-sport and what they can expect when Toronto stages the Parapan American Games in just over two years' time.
“Secondly, this competition marks the start of the road to Rio for all our swimmers and the next Paralympic Games in 2016. After last year's amazing success we will use this event to build on the momentum generated by London 2012. IPC Swimming continues to grow. We know that Montreal, which has a proud and rich history in staging major events, will deliver a top class elite sporting event for world class athletes. No matter what the impairment, be under no illusions that what you witness here next month is elite sport at its very best with some great rivalries playing out between the swimmers."
"Swimming Canada is extremely pleased to work with the International Paralympic Committee and the Club de Natation des Piscines du Parc Olympique to present this important gathering of the world's best para-swimmers," said France Latendresse, Swimming Coach. "Canada has a long history of success in para-swimming. Our swimmers won 16 medals at the London Paralympic Games in 2012 - more than half of Canada's total of 31 medals. We hope that this success continues and that our athletes win medals at home, and we hope to expose a new generation of Canadians to para-swimming and to other para-sports in general."
"We are looking forward with great anticipation to the City of Montreal hosting the IPC World Swimming Championships next month," said Gaétan Tardif, President of the Canadian Paralympic Committee. "This will be the first ever para-swimming world championship held in North America and I know the event will be world-class and that racing will be extremely exciting. Best of luck to both competitors and organizers in this final stretch of preparations."
"Montreal is a leading sport venue, an international metropolis that is renowned for the quality of its installations, its savoir-faire with regard to the organisation of sports events, its volunteers and the exceptional hospitality it offers visitors," declared Richard Deschamps, member of the City of Montreal Executive Committee, responsible for sports and leisure, infrastructures and procurement.
"It also positions itself as the perfect venue for events organized for handicapped athletes. We are especially proud to welcome these Championships that will give the public the opportunity to see the world's best para-swimmers in action. I hope that Montrealers will come to the venue in great numbers to attend this wonderful event."
"Not only are we extremely happy and proud to welcome an international competition of such scope, but in addition, this event is entirely consistent with parc Jean-Drapeau's vision of development. Furthermore, the presence of all these athletes will definitely have positive repercussions on our clientele which will be more than ever motivated to come to the Aquatic Complex to train and move," explained Daniel Blier, Directeur général at Société du parc Jean-Drapeau.
"I believe that having these World Championships in Montreal is an incredible opportunity for local athletes, especially for the new generation of athletes. This is a golden opportunity to see the best athletes in the world compete in a world-class competition, as can be seen at the Paralympic Games. This is a highly enriching, inspiring and motivating experience," concluded Aurélie Rivard, emerging Paralympian.