Eight winter sport candidates to stand for IPC Athletes’ Council elections

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) has announced that eight winter sport athletes will run for the IPC Athletes’ Council elections at the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games. This is an increase on the seven candidates that stood in PyeongChang 2018.

The IPC Athletes’ Council is a group of elected athlete representatives who act as the voice of the Para athlete community to the IPC. It is made up of nine athletes in total, which includes the six summer athletes and three winter athletes. The chairperson of the IPC Athletes’ Council is also one of the members of the IPC Governing Board.   

The IPC Athletes’ Council elections will take place from 25 February to 11 March during the Beijing 2021 Paralympic Winter Games. Athletes can vote in the main dining hall of each Paralympic Village, which will run alongside the Proud Paralympian space in Beijing, Yanqing and Zhangjiakou.

The eight candidates vying for the three places on the Council are:  

·  Akzhana Abdikarimova (Russia, Para Nordic Skiing, Para Biathlon) 

·  Joshua Peter Dueck (Canada, Para Alpine Skiing) 

·  Mitchell Gourley (Australia, Para Alpine Skiing) 

· Min Su Han (Republic of Korea, Para Ice Hockey) 

· Sitong Liu (China, Para Alpine Skiing)  

· Pol Makuri Redolad Garcia (Spain, Para Nordic Skiing) 

· Rico Roman (USA, Para Ice Hockey)

· Birgit Skarstein (Norway, Para Nordic Skiing) 

The IPC Electoral Commission will be chaired by Mark Copeland, Chairperson of the IPC Legal and Ethics Committee. A candidate brochure providing more information on each candidate and further information about the elections will be published in the upcoming weeks.

All candidates are active Paralympic athletes. This means he or she must compete in the current edition of the Paralympic Games at which the election is taking place, or have competed in either of the previous two editions of the Paralympic Games (Sochi 2014 and PyeongChang 2018).

The six summer Athletes’ Council members, who were all voted in at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, were: Chairperson Jitske Visser of the Netherlands, Italy’s Martina Caironi, Brazil’s Daniel Dias, Cuba’s Omara Durand Elias, Japan’s Takayuki Suzuki, and Iran’s Zahra Nemati.

The Athletes’ Council acts as the liaison between athletes and decision-makers and influences how Paralympic sport and the Movement grow and develop. All Aa accredited athletes competing in the Paralympic Games are encouraged to vote in the elections to ensure their voice is heard and their sport and region is represented.

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