2014 IPC Athletics Grand Prix, Nottwil

Switzerland's Marcel Hug laid down the gauntlet to David Weir ahead of August's European Championships by beating his British rival twice at the IPC Athletics Grand Prix on Saturday (17 May), first in the 800m and then in the 1,500m, to make it three wins in a row in Nottwil, Switzerland, after Friday's 10,000m win. At London 2012 Weir beat Hug to four Paralympic titles, whilst last year in Weir's absence Hug claimed five world titles in Lyon, France. Since then the two have exchanged road race wins, however Nottwil is the first time the two have met on the track this season. The 'Swiss Silver Bullet' maintained his sensational form in a very tactical 1,500m T54 which also featured Australia's Kurt Fearnley and France's Julien Casoli. Leading from the front, Hug (3:16.52) was able to hold off a late charge from Weir (3:16.70) with 200m to go to secure the win. Japan's Masayuki Higuchi (3:16.70) was third. For many years, the Swiss Open Nationals have been a well-known and established event for Wheelchair athletes from all over the world. In 2014, the 41st Swiss Open Nationals have been an IPC Athletics Grand Prix for the first time and therefore also offered track and field events for ambulant athletes (all classes 11-13, 20, 31-38, 40-46 and 50-57). International classification opportunities for athletes with physical (PI) and visual (VI) Impairment were available from 15-16 May. The event is also part of the Swiss Racing Series, a renowned event series for Wheelchair athletes. The Series includes the three events: ParAthletics IPC Athletics Grand Prix (16-18 May 2014), the Daniela Jutzeler Memorial (21 May 2014 in Nottwil) and the 15th International Wheelchair Marathon Schenkon (25 May 2014). Athletes and staff were hosted at the Swiss Paraplegics Centre right at the competition venue in Nottwil or at Campus Sursee, only 10 minutes by bus from the Paraplegics Centre. Both accommodations are fully wheelchair accessible. Wheelchair Sport Switzerlandwas happy to welcoming athletes and teams from all over the world in the beautiful region at the border of the Lake of Sempach and nearby the famous city of Lucerne, Switzerland.