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Wednesday, 10 May 2017 10:56

BRITISH OFFICIALS TAKE CHARGE IN LONDON

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Five UK officials have been appointed by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to officiate at the World Para Athletics Championships taking place in July in the London Stadium at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Shona Malcolm, Dr Margaret Werrett, Dave Jessett, Jon Mason and Alison Jordan will be amongst more than 200 technical officials involved in delivering the championships.

Shona Malcolm, who has been a volunteer official specialising in field events for 38 years, will be an international technical official (ITO) ensuring that the event runs smoothly and within IPC rules.

With experience of three Commonwealth Games, an IAAF World Championships, European Championships and London 2012 behind her, Malcolm was invited by UK Athletics to go on a IPC ITO training course in Germany in February 2013. She was successful in the exams to become a qualified IPC international technical official and this summer’s championships will be her first appointment in the role.

Malcolm, who works with officials and disability athletes in her role at Scottish Athletics, is excited about the prospect of being part of a home World Championships.

She said: “It is a great honour to have been selected. I am looking forward to the competition and gaining such valuable experience from the other international officials. You never stop learning and to be working with international officials from all over the world is a fantastic opportunity. It is great to attract these major championships to the UK and to be able to see such elite competition at first hand is a real privilege.”

Dr Margaret Werrett, Senior Mistress at Bromsgrove School in the West Midlands, will be the international starter at the World Para Athletics Championships, overseeing all the track events to ensure all starting operations run fairly and without incident. The international starter must be at the start of every event and will work with the team of starters appointed by the local organising committee.

Dr Werrett was the chief starter at the Paralympics as well as a starter at the Olympics in London in 2012. Since then she was the international starter at the European Para Athletics Championships in Grosseto in 2016, and did the same role at the Para Pan Am Games Toronto in 2015.

She said “I am delighted to have been appointed. It is so exciting to have the Championships here in the UK and to be part of it. I know it will be a very special and memorable event.”

Another international technical official at the World Para Athletics Championships will be Dave Jessett. His role will be to oversee track and field events to ensure they are run according to the rules and, in the event of any dispute, act as a referee.

Jessett, who has a background in field events, has been a Technical Official since 1995 when working as a PE teacher he saw a notice in the newspaper advertising for technical officials. Since then he hasn’t looked back and, after retiring from teaching, had more time to get involved and travel to events.

Jessett qualified as an international technical official in 2013 after reaching level 4 and officiating at many national events. Various international appointments have since followed, including IWAS (International wheelchair and Amputee Sports) in Prague in June in 2015, the Desert Challenge in Arizona in 2014, the Para Pan American Games in Toronto in 2015 and the Euro Para Athletics Championships in Grosseto in 2016.

In London 2012 he was a chief field event judge taking charge of the hammer throw. He said: “I am highly delighted and honoured to be appointed to the World Championships later this year. One never stops learning, even after 20 years as an official, so this is a great opportunity to take the next steps on the global stage. To do it on our home turf makes it really something special.”

Alongside Malcolm, Werrett, and Jessett in London will be Jon Mason who will be a field referee and Alison Jordan who will be an international photo finish judge.

Paula Gowing, UK Athletics Technical Officials Manager, said: “We are delighted that five of our very best officials have successfully gained positions at this year’s World Para Athletics Championships. Any world championships is the pinnacle for technical officials, as well as athletes, and it is especially exciting when it is taking place on home soil. It is a tremendous reflection on the standard of officiating and recognition of the importance given to the training and development of officials in the UK.”

This year will bring together 3,300 world-class athletes from more than 200 countries who will compete in 30 sessions across 20 jam-packed and action-fuelled days as both the World Para Athletics Championships (14-23 July) and the IAAF World Championships London 2017 (4-13 August) are hosted in the same city in the same summer.







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