The US city of Birmingham will host the 11th World Games from July 7-17, in which about 4,000 athletes in 37 non-Olympic sports will compete for medals. Head of the Belgian delegation Rudi Lahore is looking forward to Spurza.
In the previous World Games in 2017, Belgium was very successful. Our country won a total of 24 medals, 7 of which are gold. Can we expect such a big harvest of medals again?
“Our gym teams have reached international highs,” says Rudy Lahore. “And we expect a lot from that in Birmingham as well.” “We also have a chance in duo racing, korfball or downhilling.”
In previous World Games, our skaters gave many medals. In Birmingham, the medal hope rests with Bart Swings, the Olympic speed skating champion in the team start.
“I’ve already experienced 3 World Games with Bart. He has always shown that he maintains his interest and hunger in indoor skating. He always loves to swing back into the system he grew up in.”
Lahore eases his medal expectations. “We shouldn’t focus on those medals from the previous edition. Then we got about half of those medals with two athletes in figure skating, who outperformed them.”
“Very nice platform”
Many of the sports now included in the Olympic program have a history at the World Games. “It’s true,” says Rudy Lahore. “Just look at rugby sevens, sport climbing, beach volleyball, triathlon, taekwondo, or even badminton.”
“Breaking (Breakdance, red) is still on the World Games programme, but it will be an Olympic in 2024 in Paris. The World Games offer a great platform of sports that interests everyone.”
“And as in the Olympic Games, there are new sports that are very popular today, even drone racing. Such things are very appealing to young people. Thanks to the World Games, such sports get a chance to attract more attention.”
Belgium will travel to the United States with a large delegation. In our country there are 75 athletes, 30 men and 45 women, who participate in 19 sports.
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