CALGARY – Hockey Canada announced on Wednesday that the top four sledge hockey teams in the world will converge on the Capital News Centre in Kelowna, BC from March 13-17, 2007 for the inaugural World Sledge Hockey Challenge.
Tickets go on sale on Monday, February 12, and can be purchased online at www.selectyourtickets.com, at the Capital News Centre and Prospera Place box offices, or by phone at 250-762-5050.
Single-game individual tickets – $5
Single-game family tickets – $10
Tournament passes – $15
*all tickets include applicable taxes; group rates are available*
Canada, the defending Paralympic gold medalists, Norway, the defending world champions, Germany and the USA will take part in the round-robin tournament, with the gold medal game on the final day between the top two round-robin finishers.
Sledge hockey is the Paralympic version of hockey and, since its debut on the Paralympic program at the 1994 Lillehammer Paralympic Winter Games, it has become one of the biggest attractions for spectators at the Paralympic Winter Games. It is fast-paced, highly physical and played by male athletes with a physical disability in the lower part of the body. Canada captured its first-ever sledge hockey gold medal at the 2006 Paralympic Winter Games, defeating Norway, the defending world champions, 3-0 in the final game.
“This is another fantastic opportunity to showcase sledge hockey in our country,” says Jeff Snyder, head coach of Canada’s National Sledge Hockey Team. “Our team is very excited to get to play in a major international event in Canada, and we’re looking forward to putting on a great show for the Kelowna fans. Our coaching staff and players are very excited to wrap up the 2006-07 season with such a big event, and we look forward to putting ourselves to the test against the best in the world.”
“This is an exciting time for sport in B.C.,” said Michelle Collens, Event Development Coordinator with Sport Kelowna. “The opportunity to showcase elite sledge hockey in Kelowna will be an impressive addition to the region’s already rich sports history. Together, our community and its partners are committed to working in close cooperation with Hockey Canada and all the participating hockey federations to stage a truly memorable event. There is no doubt that Kelowna will demonstrate great pride, hard work, and commitment to excellence for the hosting of the 2007 World Sledge Hockey Challenge.”
“The City of Kelowna has a successful history of hosting world-class hockey events and we are thrilled to welcome the 2007 World Sledge Hockey Challenge to our city,” said Mayor Sharon Shepherd. “This elite event brings home the fact that the Olympics and Paralympics are only three years away, and what a terrific opportunity for Kelowna residents to catch the excitement and the spirit of the games. After all, the teams we host in Kelowna could very well be medalists in 2010. We proudly welcome Paralympians from around the world!”