IPC Alpine Skiing confirmed on Tuesday (4 November) the new membership of its Sport Technical Committee (STC), the group responsible for ensuring the continued growth and progress of the sport in the four years ahead of the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games.
The group includes former athletes, classification and technical experts and will be led by the newly elected Chairperson Markus Walser from Canada.
Walser, who has sat on the STC for the past seven years and has 11 years of experience in para-alpine skiing, outlined his priorities for the years that will take in PyeongChang 2018 and World Championships in Panorama, Canada, for alpine skiing and in La Molina, Spain, for para-snowboard. Championships are also scheduled for both sports for 2017.
Walser said: "Our biggest aim is to increase participation in areas in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Southeast Asia. I am also looking forward to working with former Chairperson Sylvana Mestre in her new role overseeing development and youth programmes.
"For para-snowboard, I am excited to develop events in more regions and at all levels from entry-level through to World Cup and the Winter Paralympics."
Walser will be supported in his role by a newly appointed Vice Chairperson Erik Petersen of the USA, who has also previously sat on the STC as the Head of Competition for North America.
Other new appointments include Italian Davide Cerato to the Head of Snowboard position. Cerato brings technical knowledge in course design and worked for the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games Organising Committee.
Canadian Ozzie Sawicki joins as the Head of Technical Control and Officiating and brings over 25 years of coaching, development and para-alpine knowledge to the role. He has also been involved in other summer and winter Paralympic sports.
Sandra Titulaer of the Netherlands completes the Committee as Head of Classification with knowledge of the area within snow sports and as a rehabilitation specialist.
New Zealand's Jane Stevens will act as a co-opted Member with non-voting rights as Head of Competition for Asia and Oceania.
The 2014-15 season will feature the 2015 IPC Para-Snowboard World Championships in La Molina, Spain, from 23-28 February and the 2015 IPC Alpine Skiing World Championships in Panorama, Canada, from 1-10 March.
The full 2014-15 season calendar for both sports will be announced shortly and will feature a series of World and Europa Cups as well as development races.
For the upcoming season, para-snowboard will feature classes for athletes with upper limb-impairments and two lower-limb classes.
More information, including the full details of the STC membership, can be found at www.ipc-alpineskiing.org, www.panorama2015.com and www.lamolina2015.com.