IPRO Director’s Message---August

Lima 2019 Pan American Games

In 1995, Racquetball became an integral part of the Pan American Games. Buenos Aires, Argentina was the first city. Each succeeding quadrennial, racquetball has been included, with the exception of Brazil in 2007. Winnipeg in 1999, Santo Domingo in 2003, Guadalajara in 2011, and Toronto in 2015, and the 2019 Games just completed in Lima. The Peruvian Games hosted 38 sports. Each time I attend, the logistics become more intricate, the quality becomes better, and the Games become bigger. Those of us in the industry should understand organization dynamics. 

Consider the following:

1.  The Games are followed by the ParaPanAm Games. A full month is dedicated to athletics.

2.  100,000 individuals signed up to be a Volunteer; 19,000 were ultimately selected.

3.  There are 41 countries in the qualifying region; racquetball had 14 countries qualify.

4.  Added to the mix of athletes were coaches, delegates, and security staff.

5.  New venues were erected and others renovated. City streets were blocked for traffic flow.

6.  The planning phase covered a decade and ran across different governing administrations.

7.  Budgets are drawn and restructured as needs are assessed and reality sets in.

From a racquetball viewpoint, let us consider:

1.  We were the only federation that offered live streaming---Youtube/IRF Facebook.

2.  ESPN Mexico broadcast play from many of the disciplines, including racquetball.

3.  Over 100 volunteers were welcome at our venue; offering assistance with

security, crowd control, facility upkeep, & food and beverage.

4.  Four different countries qualified for the team finals.  Mexico won the four individual titles.

5.  The 18 Referees represented 8 countries; all in this hemisphere.

6.  Five Championship courts are left in the complex as the legacy. It now is in the hands of 

Racquetball Peru to develop and build the programs. As host, Peru fielded a mens team.

7.  Conrrado Moscoso (Bolivia) carried his nation’s flag.

8.  Paola Longoria was selected to the Pan Am Committee as an Athlete Member.

9.  Bolivia’s ‘gold’ is their first medal ever earned in either the Pan Ams or Olympics.

10.  I instructed two developmental clinics; one for playing skills, the other for officiating.

Forty eager students attended. Manuel Flores is the IPRO Clinician to move forward.

UPCOMING: IRF World Senior Championships, US Open Championships, IRF World Juniors,

Pan American Championships, IRF World Championships

Quote of the Month

‘Life is tough; it’s even tougher when you’re stupid’ John Wayne

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