The International Federation for Athletes with Intellectual Impairments (INAS) has announced the dates and locations for the 2019 alpine and Nordic skiing and cross-country athletics World Championships.
First up will be the 2019 INAS Skiing World Championships in Autrans and nearby Lans en Vercors in France from 5-11 March.
Both alpine and cross-country skiing will feature as 60 athletes from 10 countries take on the slopes and trails.
Alpine skiing will feature slalom, giant slalom and super-G. Nordic skiers will compete in the cross-country sprint, short and long distance races as well as a 3×2.5km relay.
Autrans is known as the Nordic skiing capital of France and it hosted cross-country skiing events for the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble.
Lans en Vercors, also in southeastern France, will host the alpine skiing. The Championships are being organised by the French Federation for Adaptive Sports.
A month later Ostrzeszów, Poland, will stage the 2019 INAS Athletics Cross-Country World Championships from 4-8 April. Men’s and women’s short, long and team events will be contested.
Around 30 athletes from five countries are expected to line-up for the event which is organised by the Polish INAS member, ZSS Sprawni Razem.
Marc Truffaut, INAS President, said: “It is great to get 2019 underway with two new additions to the competition calendar. Following on from 2018 where we had a record number of new athletes across all sports, we expect both events to be highly competitive.
“This year is a Global Games year but INAS also continues to provide opportunities for sports not on the programme, and therefore for a wide variety of athletes with intellectual impairments.
“My thanks go to the organisers of both Championships for their commitment to hosting what I am sure will be memorable events.”
Both Championships will feature athletes competing in II1 (athletes with an intellectual impairment) as well as II2 (athletes with a more significant intellectual impairment) and II3 (athletes with high-functioning autism.)
The last INAS Skiing World Championships were held in Zakopane, Poland in 2018. The previous edition of the INAS Athletics Cross-Country World Championships were held in Eperney/Reims, France in 2017.
INAS Rowing also launched an online indoor rowing competition to grow the sport around the world.
It hopes to attract more athletes by allowing them to submit their performances by video between 15 January – 31 March as part of the 2019 INAS Rowing Cyber Championships.