runnerThe UK has been chosen to host the upcoming 7th Inas European Cross Country Championships, which will be in Yorkshire, it has been announced.

The championships will be held from February 19-23 at Thornes Park in Wakefield. The city previously held the championships in 2006.

As the Inas member organisation for Great Britain, the UK Sports Association for People with Learning Disability (UKSA) has been awarded hosting rights on the basis of a bid for delivery by its England member, Mencap Sport.  The two organisations will work in close collaboration to deliver the event.  Hosting this important event has been made possible by the Local Organising Committee, led by John Wootton and support provided by Wakefield Council.

Inas is an international charity and the recognised International Federation for athletes with an intellectual disability. It is a global organisation that promotes inclusion through sport and is a full member of the International Paralympic Committee representing intellectual disability.

Tracey McCillen, chief executive of the UKSA, said: “The 7th Inas European Cross Country Championships will bring together elite international athletes, their families, coaches and supporters to the City of Wakefield to compete for a coveted place amongst Europe’s best. We look forward to working with Mencap Sport and Wakefield Council who through a strong collaboration will no doubt deliver an outstanding event.”

Jan Tregelles, chief executive of Mencap, said: “We are delighted to host this top sporting event here in the UK. We believe that people with a learning disability should have the same opportunities to participate in elite sport, enjoy it, and excel in it as all other athletes. This competition will bring together the most outstanding runners with a learning disability from across Europe and we hope it brings the sport the attention it deserves.”