On Tuesday and Wednesday Paris’ Charléty Stadium is hosting Handisport Open Paris 2017, the newest addition to the World Para Athletics Grand Prix calendar. The event will welcome 456 athletes representing 32 nations and bring together close to 10,000 spectators to celebrate and share in this world-class sporting event.
Organized by the Fédération Française Handisport (FFH), this is the first time the Paris Open has appeared on World Para Athletics Grand Prix after it was added to the calendar at the start of the season. It is one of nine stages of the competition overseen by World Para Athletics and is a key qualifying step for the upcoming London 2017 World Para Athletics Championships to be held 14-23 July.
The Grand Prix event includes 14 disciplines and will feature many medal-winning athletes from Rio as well as up and coming athletes carrying with them the hopes of the next generation.
Paris 2024 says “this competition is expected to further establish public support for para-sport in France.”
“Since the inception of the bid,” Paris 2024 says the bid committee “has worked with Olympic and Paralympic athletes to develop its concept for the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games as a single project that addresses the challenges of all athletes and all sports.”
During the Handisport Open Paris 2017, Paris 2024 says it will reinforce the key pillars of its bid around Paralympic sport using education to engage with Generation 2024, drive awareness and enhance the perception of para-sport in France.
Marie-Amélie Le Fur, Co-Chair of the Paris 2024 Athletes’ Committee and three-time Paralympic Champion, said “the Paris Handisport Open and Paris 2024 are showcasing the performances of Paralympic athletes while raising awareness and changing perceptions around impairment in France.”
“Attitudes are changing and we want these major competitions, like the Games, to act as a powerful catalyst for pushing the boundaries even further in French society and beyond.”
Tony Estanguet, Paris 2024 Co-Chair and three-time Olympic champion, added “the Handisport Open in Paris is the last international Paralympic event to be held in France before the 2024 Host City is named in Lima in September.”
“It is a great opportunity for us to celebrate para-sport in the heart of the city and to embody today the promise of Paris 2024: to give the Paralympic Games and its athletes a prominent stage and to share with the world the values of sport for all.”
Paris is competing with Los Angeles to host the 2024 Games. The winning city will be announced in Lima, Peru September 13.