Croatia to host IPC Shooting Paralympic qualifier

IPC Shooting has announced that Osijek, Croatia, will host one of three World Cups that will act as qualifiers for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

The IPC Shooting World Cup competition, taking place between 7-15 July, replaces the previous qualifier scheduled for Volmerange, France, which was cancelled in February.

Sarah Bond, IPC Shooting Sport Manager, said: "I am really pleased that Croatia have come forward to host one of the most important competitions on the calendar in 2015, and indeed ahead of Rio 2016.

"We are grateful to the Croatian National Paralympic Committee, who will be organising the competition, and are really looking forward to welcoming approximately 175 athletes from 30 countries who are all eager to secure tickets for their countries to Brazil."

In November 2014, IPC Shooting announced that three 2015 World Cups would act as direct quota allocation opportunities for Rio 2016, where countries can secure places at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games taking place between 7-18 September.

In addition to Croatia, qualifiers will take place in, Sydney, Australia, in September and Fort Benning, USA, in November.

There will also be an additional three World Cups in 2015 that, whilst not offering qualification for Rio 2016, will still provide athletes with crucial opportunities to compete.

The World Cup season kicks off in Stoke Mandeville, Great Britain, on 30 March before travelling to Szczecin, Poland, in April and Antalya, Turkey, in May.

The road to Rio 2016 started at the 2014 IPC Shooting World Championships in Suhl, Germany, where 63 athletes secured coveted places for their countries.

The period of direct quota allocation, where National Paralympic Committees can gain places for athletes before submitting their entries by name, ends on the conclusion of the Fort Benning World Cup on 7 November.