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Warriner Collects #1 Accolades, Kiwi for ITU Board

Forwarded by Tri NZ on behalf of the International Triathlon Union

1st December 2008

Warriner Collects World Number One Accolades And Kiwi Terry Sheldrake Appointed To ITU Board


International Triathlon Union
Press release

Marisol Casado new President of International Triathlon Union
Founding President Les McDonald accepts Honourary Presidency of ITU

Madrid, Spain (November 29, 2008) - Today at its 21st Congress in Madrid, a new President, Secretary General and Executive Board of the International Triathlon Union (ITU) were elected. Marisol Casado of Spain ran unopposed and was officially sworn in as new President, just the second in ITU's history. Canadian Loreen Barnett was uncontested as the new Secretary General, making ITU the only Olympic International Federation to have women as President and Secretary General.

"It is not an envious task to follow in the footsteps of one who has done such an outstanding job over so many years. It is even more difficult to try to step right up and suggest a series of improvements," said Casado in her acceptance speech. "I view my prime challenge as accepting this legacy of unheard-of accomplishments that has been bestowed on me and then hopefully enhancing it even further."

Four Vice-Presidents were also elected including Australian Bill Walker, Antonio Alvarez of Mexico, Kyung-Sun Yu of South Korea, and Sarah Springman, President of the British Triathlon Federation. Tom Carrasco of The Philippines ran unopposed for Treasurer.

ITU's founding President Les McDonald of Canada retires this year and accepted the position of Honourary President, however, only after consulting with ITU's existing Honourary President Gunnar Ericsson of Sweden.

"Juan Antonio Samaranch appointed (Gunnar) to help me put triathlon into the Olympic Games and I made him the Honourary President and so I would not accept this as long as Gunnar Ericsson is there because he was the father I never had," said McDonald.

Ericsson said he wanted to stand together with McDonald as Honourary Presidents for half a year, then Ericsson would step down on his 90th birthday. To that, McDonald responded, "I said okay. Some people in life you like to fight but you don't fight people like Gunnar Ericsson because without him we would not be here."

Another resolution was passed to name Chiharu Igaya of Japan an Honourary ITU Member after stepping down as ITU Vice-President. Igaya, also an IOC Vice-President, is considered incredibly important to triathlon's inclusion onto the Olympic programme.

The election for ITU's Executive Board was so competitive, it required two additional rounds of voting. The new members of Executive Board are (in alphabetical order):

Ria Damgren Nilsson (SWE)

Anatoly Korobov (RUS)

Xin Li (CHN)

Melissa Merson (USA)

Shin Otsuka (JPN)

Mario Rodriguez (GUA)

Terry Sheldrake (NZL)

Warriner recognized

The 2008 overall world cup series champion Warriner made the long trip from New Zealand to accept her world cup trophy. She was glad to have the opportunity to thank the hundreds and thousands that work behind the scenes at ITU events.

"It's a long way to come from New Zealand but now that I'm here I'm so glad I'm here. You don't realize how many people work behind the scenes and they're the ones that put on the races. We turn up to race but don't really get to say thank you," said Warriner. "Just listening to what everyone had to say about Les and what's he's done, I didn't appreciate what he's done until I sat here. To be here is the best feeling ever and I'm so glad I came. It's an honour to be here and to be recognized for it."

ITU's new Executive Board will meet less than 24 hours after being elected on Sunday afternoon. Members of ITU's six committees were also elected during the election. The committees were technical, medical, constitution, women's, credentials and Duathlon. Click here to view the new committee members

Click here for a review and photos from ITU's Gala on Friday night

Click here to log into ITU's Online Media Centre

About the International Triathlon Union (ITU):

The International Triathlon Union is the world governing body for the Olympic sport of Triathlon and all related multi-sport disciplines: Duathlon, Aquathlon and Winter Triathlon. ITU was founded in 1989 at the first ITU Congress in Avignon, France and has maintained its headquarters in Vancouver, Canada since then. It now has over 120 affiliated National Federations around the world and is the youngest International Federation in the Olympics. Triathlon was awarded Olympic status in 1994. ITU is proudly committed to supporting the development of the sport worldwide through strong relationships with continental and national federations, working with its partners to offer a balanced sport development programme from grassroots to a high-performance level. For more information, visit


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