The International World Games Association (IWGA) formally recognized the US National Ultimate Team as the 2013 “Team of the Year” during a special ceremony today at the IWGA headquarters in Colorado Springs, CO, USA. IWGA President Ron Froehlich and President Emeritus of the United States Olympic Committee William Hybl presented team member Ryan Farrell, team manager Byron Hicks, and USA Ultimate Chief Executive Officer Tom Crawford with the award.
L to R: President Emeritus of the U.S. Olympic Committee William Hybl, World Games Gold Medalist Ryan Farrell, IWGA President Ron Froehlich, USA Ultimate CEO Tom Crawford and U.S. National Team World Games Team Leader Byron Hicks.
The U.S. National Team posted a perfect 6-0 record at the World Games in Cali, Colombia last July, capturing the gold medal with a 13-6 win over Australia in the championship game. It was the third-consecutive gold-medal performance, following victories by the United States in 2009 (Kaohsiung, Taiwan) and 2005 (Duisburg, Germany).
"It’s amazing how well we were supported by the entire ultimate community and USA Ultimate," said Farrell after accepting the award on behalf of his teammates. “Since the award was determined by a public vote, it really puts into perspective how much support we received from the community. I am proud to be here on behalf of my teammates to accept this honor. Playing in the World Games, in a stadium full of 15,000 people, at a high level and respectfully, was really a life-changing experience.”
“This award is a huge confirmation of the success of the 2013 World Games Ultimate competition, which electrified the 45,000 spectators during our three day event in the Pascual Guerrero Olympic Stadium in Cali,” commented WFDF President Robert “Nob” Rauch. “The outstanding performance of Team USA is recognized by this prestigious IWGA award. We want to thank the flying disc sports community for showing their tremendous support through our mobilization of social media, and also all the other sports fans around the globe who voted recently and who made us the most watched sport in the video-streaming during last year’s Games. WFDF and our flying disc athletes are enthusiastically looking forward to the 2017 World Games in Wroclaw, Poland.”
Following the conclusion of the World Games, the international sporting community elected the US National Ultimate Team as the ‘Team of the Year’ with 16,744 votes over the women’s Tug-of-War team from Chinese Taipei (13,945) and the Netherlands’ mixed Korfball team (3,574).