OTTAWA – The 12 months of 2022 will be best remembered in Para sport for the Paralympic Winter Games which were held in Beijing in March. However it was also a year of a return to a more regular competitive calendar, and world championships returned with a force across summer and winter sports.
Some were already scheduled for this year, but others were postponed due to the pandemic in 2020 and 2021. Dartmouth, N.S. and Baie-Comeau, Que. were among host cities for world championships in 2022.
Here are the world championships which were held in Paralympic sports throughout the year, and how Canadians performed:
January 12-23: World Para Snow Sports Championships, Lillehammer, Norway
This was the inaugural combined world championships for Para alpine skiing, Para biathlon, Para cross-country and Para snowboard. Postponed from early 2021, Canada collected 15 medals, including three gold, for ninth in the overall standings.
February 19-27: World Archery Para Championships, Dubai, UAE
Three Para archers represented Canada at the world championships, postponed from 2021 – Kevin Evans, Steven Murgatroyd, and Chris Waterman.
April 30 – May 5: World Wheelchair Mixed Doubles Curling Championship, Lohja, Finland
Marie Wright of Moose Jaw and Jamie Anseeuw of Winnipeg represented Canada at the inaugural mixed doubles event. They posted a 3-5 record and placed ninth overall.
June 12-18: World Para Swimming Championships, Madeira, Portugal
Originally scheduled for 2021, Canada concluded Madeira 2022 with 18 podium finishes (6-5-8), five more than at London 2019. It marked the country’s best tally at a world championships since a 21-medal haul in 2010 in Eindhoven, Netherlands. The 30-athlete Canadian contingent also set three championship records, 14 national marks, and 22 personal best times.
August 3-7: World Para Canoe Championships, Dartmouth, N.S.
Ottawa’s Brianna Hennessy won the silver medal in the VL2 200-m and bronze in the KL1 200-m at the integrated world championships, contributing to Canada’s six-medal haul for fourth overall.
August 6-14: Para equestrian, world championships, Herning, Denmark
Three Paralympians – Jody Schloss of Toronto, U.K. based Roberta Sheffield and Winona Hartvikson of Langley, B.C. – were the Canadian riders in the Para dressage events at the World Equestrian Games. Sheffield’s sixth place in the Grade III freestyle topped Canada’s results.
August 11-14: Para Cycling Road World Championships, Baie-Comeau, Que.
Canada finished the 40-country competition with seven medals (three silver and four bronze). Keely Shaw of Midale, Sask. and Nathan Clement of West Vancouver led the charge with two medals apiece. Joey Desjardins, Charles Moreau and Shelley Gautier were also on the podium.
October 10-16: Wheelchair Rugby World Championships, Vejle, Denmark
With fifth spot, Canada bettered its result from the last worlds in 2018 (sixth) and equalled its showing from the 2020 Paralympic Games.
October 20-23: Para Cycling Track World Championships, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, France
A new Canadian Para cycling star was born at the velodrome built for the 2024 Games. Mel Pemble of Victoria earned double gold with victories in the women’s C3 omnium and scratch race. Kate O’Brien of Calgary added a silver in the women’s C4 500m time trial.
November 1-6: Para badminton, world championships, Tokyo, Japan
The world’s best Para badminton players returned to Tokyo and Canada fielded a six-member team. Yuka Chokyu of Vancouver and Wyatt Lightfoot of Assiniboia, Sask. both advanced to the playoff round in singles. The worlds were originally set for October 25-31, 2021.
November 4-11: Sitting Volleyball World Championships, Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina
The Canadian women made history with a silver medal, its first ever podium at a world championships. They lost to Brazil in a five-set final. The Canadian men were 11th.
November 6-17: World Shooting Para Sport Championships, Al Ain, UAE
Paralympian Doug Blessin was Canada’s lone entry at the Shooting Para sport world championships where his best finish was 33rd in qualification for the mixed 10m air rifle prone SH2 event.
November 8-10: Para Judo World Championships, Baku, Azerbaijan
Priscilla Gagné, Canada’s flag bearer at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics repeated her Games performance with a silver medal in the women’s 57 kilos.
November 22: Para Triathlon World Championships, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Stefan Daniel of Calgary won his fifth career world crown in the men’s PTS5 while Kamylle Frenette of Dieppe, N.B., collected her first career podium placing third in the women’s PTS5.
December 6-3: World Boccia Championships, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Alison Levine and Iulian Ciobanu teamed up for Canada’s best result at worlds, winning bronze in the BC4 pairs event. Levine also posted the eight-member squad’s best finish in individual play, finishing fourth in the women’s BC4 tournament.
December 8-17: World Goalball Championships, Matosinhos, Portugal
Originally scheduled for June 2022 in China, the Canadian women’s team had an exceptional tournament placing fourth while the men took 13th spot.