From April 21 to 30, more than 7,000 up-and-coming and elite athletes from 20 countries will compete in 9 disciplines.
“After 3 virtual and hybrid editions, the Défi sportif AlterGo is back stronger then ever for its 40th edition. The scope of the event is a harbinger of what awaits us,” says Maxime Gagnon, President and CEO of AlterGo, who is pleased with the return of Canadian and international athletes to Montreal, and happy to announce that more than 110 schools will be participating in this year’s anniversary edition. “We are holding this 40th edition thanks to the vision and foresight of Monique Lefebvre, who founded this event back in 1984,” he said.
Five inspiring ambassador athletes
All five 2023 ambassador athletes have a personal history with the Défi sportif AlterGo.. They are boccia player Marylou Martineau (Quebec City), wheelchair basketball player Theodore Gallant (Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue), parahockey player Saoud Messaoudi (Saint-Hubert), school athlete Emy Poirier (Longueuil) and recently retired paracyclist Marie-Claude Molnar (Longueuil).
“My first participation in the Défi sportif AlterGo was in 2016 and I am very proud to be back as an ambassador athlete. I firmly believe that this is an opportunity with tremendous outreach power. With so many athletes and volunteers involved, we are on the right track to promote social inclusion and physical activity among young people,” says Saoud Messaoudi.
Competitions for everyone: don’t miss them!
If there are athletes who will give everything in Montreal, it is certainly the boccia players who will participate in the World Boccia Montreal 2023 World Cup. In the midst of the selection process for the Paris Paralympic Games, the best boccia players will gather at Aréna Maurice-Richard. The next generation of young boccia players and the elite will rub shoulders at this competition venue, as both school boccia competitions and the National Open – for elite Canadian boccia players – will be presented.
There will also be plenty of action at Howie-Morenz Arena where Canada and the United States will face off in a 3-game series. Junior parahockey teams are also expected.
While the international competitions promise to be exciting, the school competitions, beginning April 21 with the mini marathon (presented for the first time at Jarry Park) will also be worth watching closely! More than 110 elementary and high schools from all over Quebec are expected to participate in school competitions.
At the provincial and national levels, wheelchair basketball, para-swimming and powerchair soccer are planned, as is the Chantal Petitclerc Para-Athletics Classic. The latter will be presented this year on track and field and will include throwing events for the first time at the Défi sportif AlterGo. Swimming and gymnastics competitions will include Special Olympics athletes, while soccer and softball for people with hearing disabilities will also be presented.
The Défi sportif 40th edition exhibition
This 40th edition of the Défi sportif AlterGo will be celebrated and highlighted in style! In addition to high-level competitions, a special exhibition recounting the event’s key moments will be presented at the Complexe sportif Claude-Robillard and other satellite sites. A great opportunity to explore the history of the Défi sportif AlterGo, from its humble beginnings until today.
About the Défi sportif AlterGo
The Défi sportif AlterGo is the largest annual multi-sport event in Canada. International in scope, it is the only one to bring together, since 1984, both elite and up-and-coming athletes with all functional limitations. Much more than a simple event, the Défi sportif AlterGo aims to promote physical activities and adapted sports throughout Quebec all year long, to promote an active lifestyle and to be an important vector of awareness and social inclusion for young people with disabilities by reaching different networks: elected officials, partners, and the general public.
AlterGo is a unifying organization and a driving force for social innovation that is focused on universal accessibility and the inclusion of people with functional limitations. It has more than 145 members who care about access to sports, recreation, and culture for people with functional limitations on the island of Montreal. The Défi sportif AlterGo and Formation AlterGo mobilize organizations, elected officials and the general public to promote social inclusion throughout Quebec.