Winners of the 17th FAI World Paragliding Championships
17th FAI World Paragliding Championships was held in Loma Bola, Tucuman, Argentina from October 31 till November 13, 2021. It was a complicated case to have this competition happen. FAI CIVL Steward Igor Erzen comments: "Organizer did very well, to be able to make sure that every pilot had a chance to come and enjoy the scenic and hospitality of Yerba Buena and Tucuman area. Covid restrictions didn’t make running this competition any easier and the organizer had to go through quite a few obstacles to make it happen. In the end, they managed to get 6 scored tasks and new champions were crowned". Jamie Shelden, FAI CIVL Jury president, adds: " We are pleased to wrap up great world championships here in Tucuman, Argentina. Despite many extra burdens due to COVID and despite having a very short time to prepare, we had six tasks, crowned a world champion and pilots seemed to enjoy the event". 150 pilots from 37 nations came to compete in Tucuman Argentina.
All in all 7 tasks were flown, 1 task was cancelled due to protest and in 6 remaining 4 ended up with 39-111 pilots in Goal. Considering that from the beginning everybody knew that conditions will be weak and the game will be set for survival the result even exceeds expectations. However good pilots won even in bad conditions and we see that the top overall is occupied by the top WPRS ranking pilots - so the skills and teamwork decide it all.
For the first time in the history of Paragliding, the team of the United Kingdom becomes the World Champion. And the title of World Champion goes to Russel Ogden (GBR), thus the UK pilot is crowned World Champion after a break of 14 years - Bruce Goldsmith was a champion in 2007. Both Ogden and Bruce are paraglider manufacturers (Ozone and BGD). Throughout this competition, Russel Ogden showed an outstanding result winning 4 tasks out of 6. The third place also belongs to Ozone team player - Luc Armant (FRA) and the second to Honorin Hamard (World Champion of 2015).
Also, for the first time in history the female World Champion title goes to Switzerland - Yael Margelish who was second at the previous worlds has not made it to the top leaving behind twice world champion Seiko Fukuoka (FRA) and once World Champion Klaudia Bulgakov (POL).Congratulations to the winners!"
1: Russell OGDEN (GBR) (link to interview)
2: Honorin HAMARD (FRA)
3: Luc ARMANT (FRA)
1: Yael MARGELISCH (SUI) (link to the interview)
2: Seiko FUKUOKA (FRA)
3: Klaudia BULGAKOW (POL)
1: United Kingdom
3: Czech Republic
Photo on top.
Photos credits: Ulrich Jessop.
Congratulations to the organizers and team that worked to make this event happen:
Event Organiser: Matias Fortini
Meet Director: Sergio Bujazha
Safety Director: Mario Sueldo
Rescue: Bomberos Voluntarios de Yerba Buena / Policía de Tucumán
Live Tracking Coordinator and Daily reporting and Live Commentary: Ruth Jessop
Safety and Retrieval: Evaristo Bujazha
Weather Forecast: Eduardo Sánchez Granel
Transport and Retrieval: Sebastián Malizia
Scorer: Ulric Jessop
Headquarters Coordinator: Matias Llanos
Take-Off Marshal: Mercedes Gijón
Goal Marshal: Jorge Arcuri
Covid protocol: Dr. Marcelo López Avellaneda / SIPROSA
Public and Press Relations: María Lobo Murga
Photographs, Videos: Tom Ceunen
Social Events and Ceremonies: Noelia Soria
FAI CIVL media coverage: Elena Filonova
FAI CIVL Steward: Igor Eržen (SLO)
FAI CIVL Jury:
Jamie Ranae Shelden (USA) - Jury President
Ivan Lukanov (MKD): - on-site Jury Member
Andy Cowley, Goran Dimiskovsky, Stéphane Malbos (FRA) – remote Jury members