Para Dance Sport World Championships 2019
The Para Dance Sport World Championship was held in Bonn, Germany over the weekend of 29th November – 1st December.
A first time host for Para Dance Sport competition, the home of the International Paralympic Committee was a fitting home for a World Championships.
In total 26 countries competed comprising 225 athletes competed in 21 medal events.
Great Britain were represented by our own Gary Lyness and Paula Moulton.
Gary and Paula competed in Combi Freestyle on the first day (Friday) and Latin Combi on the Sunday.
The Combi Latin Class 2 was the toughest competition of the three-day championships with 28 couples competing in several rounds of the Latin 5 dance.
GB’s couple placed 21st. Paula said, “It’s a great achievement for us and an improvement on our last World Championships when we just 1 off the bottom. We were just a few marks away from the ¼ final”.
There was a shock at the top though as the two-time Filipino world champions Rhea Marquez and Julius Jun Obero placed a surprise third behind Poland and Russia who took the Gold.
Combi Freestyle Class 2 on the Friday saw 23 couples compete. Gary commented “We placed 17th. Initially we were a little disappointed in the placing but having looked back at our scores over the last few competitions, our technical and presentation scores increased by over 0.6 points. So while our placing reflected the tough competition, we have shown we have improved again on our presentation of our routine.”
It’s no surprise that on their return to the dancefloor, after the ban was lifted, Russia dominated the championships taking home 11 Gold medals. Max Sedakov taking 6 of those.
Korea shone through in the Combi Standard events taking Gold in both Class 1 and Class 2.
Other highlights included Ukranian Ivan Sivak’s Freestyle Single performance and Filipino Lairca Nicdao taking the first Junior World title in Women’s Singles.
“We are grateful to Para Dance UK who supported us financially to get to the World Championships this year”, said Paula. “It is an honour just to be at such a prestigious competition as the Worlds and to represent your country.”
“We’d really like to thank all our supporters and sponsors – RMA Sport, International Dance Shoes but mostly our coach Accursio Romeo without whom we wouldn’t be getting the increased results that we’ve been achieving over the last year or so” added Gary. “I feel so proud to carry the flag and represent our country at an international level on the world stage.”
Full results and reports from the competition are on the World Para Dance Sport site.
Gary and Paula will be taking a little rest over Christmas before starting to prepare for the next Championship, the Dutch Open in April 2020.
Photos from the event below.