After four successful editions of the Turkish Grand Prix held in Samsun on Turkey's northern coast, the event moved to the city of Antalya in the south of the country, on the shores of the Mediterranean sea. The official draw took place today in the Rixos hotel, just a few steps away from the Antalya Arena Spor Salonu (Meltem, 2. Cd. 6 P, 07030 Muratpaşa / Antalya) which will host the athletes throughout the weekend.

Over the years, Antalya has become the tourist capital of the Turkish Mediterranean coast, nicknamed the 'Turkish Riviera'. It is considered one of the most popular seaside resorts in the world with nearly 12 million tourists every year.

The old town of Antalya, Kaleici, stretches along a steep cliff below which one can discover an ancient port, transformed into a modern marina. With more than 2.3 million inhabitants, Antalya is an important urban center and since its foundation in 150 BC. AD, the city has always been inhabited.

The IJF President, Mr. Marius Vizer, who will be present during the weekend in Turkey, delivered a message to all the delegations: “The IJF World Judo Tour is now in Turkey in its newest location as Antalya joins the global list of host cities.

The three-day Grand Prix is the fifth event of the season and will command the interest of the city and the country as Turkey have shown great support to our sport and IJF initiatives. I believe that the Turkish Judo Federation will provide first-class hospitality and a world-class competition.

I wish good luck to everyone involved in the organisation and delivery of the competition. I send my best wishes to all judoka and coaches. I am confident that you will show our sport in a positive light and will enjoy your experience in Turkey.“

Mr. Sezer Huysuz, is the new happy president of the Turkish Judo Federation. Elected in October 2016, he will, for the first time, officiate as the leader of Turkish Judo. A former -73kg athlete, Sezer Huysuz competed at the European and World Championships and participated two times in the Olympic Games. He was also a multiple Turkish national champion.

Mr. Sezer Huysuz said: “The Grand Prix is a major event for the Turkish Judo Federation and Turkish sport. Such an event increases the value of our sport since it is seen as a preparation for Tokyo 2020 and it gives the athletes opportunities to collect points for the World Ranking List.

The Grand Prix is taking place in Antalya, one of the most favorite touristic destinations in Turkey and in the world. We are expecting great judo. Moreover, being broadcasted live on TRT 3 over the weekend, the Grand Prix will help us to develop even further judo in our country.

Taking part in this event, which I attended as an athlete before and as president now, is the source of honor and pride for me.“

Mr. Mohamed Meridja, IJF Education and coaching director welcomed the 34 heads of delegation, representing 253 athletes (156 men, 97 women), in the name of the IJF President, Mr. Marius Vizer. The technical aspect of the draw was led by Mr. Vladimir Barta, IJF Head Sport Director, assisted by Mr. Daniel Lascau, IJF Sport Director. Mr. Barta said: “It is a real pleasure to see that a former top athlete, like Mr. Sezer Huysuz, has now become a top leader of an important judo federation.“ Before the end of the draw, Mr. Jan Snijders, IJF Head Refereeing Director, explained with details what are the important criteria that the referees and the experts are going to look at during the weekend, the main goal being to promote ‘positive judo‘.

To raise awareness of the potential of sport to help for development and peace, 6 April was declared as the International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) by the UN General Assembly. The adoption of this Day signifies the increasing recognition by the United Nations of the positive influence that sport can have on the advancement of human rights, and social and economic development.

On the occasion of the 2017 International Day of Sport for Development and Peace (IDSDP) on 6 April, the United Nations Office on Sport for Development and Peace (UNOSDP) launched the digital campaign #WePlayTogether to encourage organizations and individuals who support or carry out sport for development and peace activities to partake in the commemoration of the IDSDP. The campaign invites participants to share a picture on social media that represents for them the “power of sport to promote peace, unity and inclusion”.

The international judo community celebrated today the IDSDP on the occasion of the official draw of the Antalya Grand Prix. The International Judo Federation is very active in building a better society through its Judo for Peace and Judo for Children programs. Two years ago, the IJF was awarded with the “Creative Sports Award” for its project in the Syrian Refugee Camps in Kilis.

Under the supervision of the International Judo Federation and led by Turkish Judo Federation, the social project, initiated for Syrian children having fled war to hold on to life in Öncüpınar container city in Kilis, was deemed worthy of the “Creative Sports Award” by the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Awards. The president of the Turkish Federation, Mr. Sezer Huysuz said: “We will not confine ourselves to this project. By developing it further, we will carry out not only in Kilis but also in other container cities. Our efforts on this matter keep going with the contributions of a professional team.”

Among the countries present on the image are: Afghanistan (AFG) - Argentina (ARG) - Australia (AUS) - Austria (AUS) - Azerbaijan (AZE) - Bosnia-Herzegovina (BIH) - China (CHN) - Croatia (CRO) - Czech Republic (CZE) - Great Britain (GBR) - Georgia (GEO) - Hungary (HUN) - Israel (ISR) - Kazakhstan (KAZ) - Kyrgyzstan (KGZ) - Kosovo (KOS) - Lithuania (LTU) - Moldova (MDA) - Mongolia (MGL) - Portugal (POR) - Romania (ROU) - Russia (RUS) - Slovenia (SLO) - Serbia (SRB) - Tajikistan (TJK) - Turkmenistan (TKM) - Chinese Taipei (TPE) - Turkey (TUR) - United Arab Emirates (UAE) - Ukraine (UKR) - Uzbekistan (UZB) - France (FRA) - Venezuela (VEN) - Algeria (ALG) - Netherlands (NED) - Germany (GER) - India (IND) - Italy (ITA) - Malta (MLT) - Canada (CAN) - Gabon (GAB) - Korea (KOR) - United States of America (USA) - Japan (JPN) - Morocco (MAR) - Spain (ESP) - Belgium (BEL)...

Number of athletes: 14
Top seed athletes
GALBADRAKH Otgontsetseg (KAZ) - WRL 3: 3rd Rio Olympic Games 2016
RISHONY Shira (ISR) - WRL 13: 2 times Grand Slam bronze medallist
MINSKER Noa (ISR) - WRL 14: 3rd Baku Grand Slam 2017
SIDEROT Maria (POR) - WRL 35: 5th Tbilisi Grand Prix 2017

Number of Athletes: 13
Top seed athletes
COHEN Gili (ISR) - WRL 7: 1st Baku Grand Slam 2016
KRASNIQI Distria (KOS) - WRL 13: 3rd Paris Grand Slam 2017
SIKIC Tena (CRO) - WRL 35: 3rd Tashkent Grand Prix 2016
TUITEKOVA Aigunim (KAZ) - WRL 47: 1st Tashknent Grand Prix 2016

Number of Athletes: 13
Top seed athletes
GJAKOVA Nora (KOS) - WRL 15: 2nd Tbilisi Grand Prix 2016
NELSON LEVY Timna (ISR) - WRL 23: 3rd Baku Grand Slam 2017
NISHANBAYEVA Sevara (KAZ) - WRL 33: 3rd Tashkent Grand Prix 2016
TSEREGBAATAR Khulan (MGL) - WRL 54: 5th Tbilisi Grand Prix 2017

Number of Athletes: 15
Top seed athletes
UNTERWURZACHER Kathrin (AUT) - WRL 3: 1st Tokyo Grand Slam 2016
HAECKER Katharina (AUS) - WRL 18: 3rd Budapest Grand Prix 2016
URDABAYEVA Marian (KAZ) - WRL 30: 1st Asian Championships 2016
BALDORJ Mungunchimeg (MGL) - WRL 31: 1st Ulaanbaatar Grand Prix 2016

Number of Athletes: 19
Top seed athletes
RODRIGUEZ Elvismar (VEN) - WRL 3: 2nd Tbilisi Grand Prix 2017
MATIC Barbara (CRO) - WRL 13: 3rd Baku Grand Slam 2017
MATNIYAZOVA Gulnoza (UZB) - WRL 20: 1st Tashkent Grand Prix 2016
GERCSAK Szabina (HUN) - WRL 21: Junior World Champion 2015

Number of Athletes: 10
Top seed athletes
AMANGELDIYEVA Albina (KAZ) - WRL 18: 2nd Tashkent Grand Prix 2016
DMITRIEVA Anastasiya (RUS) - WRL 33: 3rd Qingdao Grand Prix 2016
RAMIREZ Yahima (POR) - WRL 47: 5th Samsun Grand Prix 2016
RAIFOVA Zarina (KAZ) - WRL 54: 3rd Tashkent Grand Prix 2016

Number of Athletes: 13
Top seed athletes
SAYIT Kayra (TUR) - WRL 6: 2nd Baku Grand Slam 2017
CERIC Larisa (BIH) - WRL 7: 3rd Düsseldorf Grand Prix 2017
PAKENYTE Santa (LTU) - WRL 15: 3rd Abu Dhabi Grand Slam 2016
ISSANOVA Gulzhan (KAZ) - WRL 23: 1st Tashkent Grand Prix 2016

Number of Athletes: 18
Top seed athletes
TILOVOV Mukhriddin (UZB) - WRL 12: 1st Grand Prix Tashkent 2016
IBRAYEV Rustam (KAZ) - WRL 22: 2nd Almaty Grand Prix 2016
OZLU Bekir (TUR) - WRL 32: 1st Samsun Grand Prix 2016
KYRGYZBAYEV Gusman (KAZ) - WRL 35: 5th Baku Grand Slam 2017

Number of Athletes: 22
Top seed athletes
DAVAADORJ Tumurkhuleg (MGL) - WRL 3: 2nd Tbilisi Grand Prix 2017
DOVDON Altansukh (MGL) - WRL 6: 3rd Tokyo Grand Slam 2016
SHMAILOV Baruch (ISR) - WRL 13: 3rd Baku Grand Slam 2107
MUKANOV Azamat (KAZ) - WRL 20: 2nd Abu Dhabi Grand Slam 2016

Number of Athletes: 26
Top seed athletes
BOBOEV Giyosjon (UZB) - WRL 6: 1st Tbilisi Grand Prix 2017
BUTBUL Tohar (ISR) - WRL 20: 2rd Paris Grand Slam 2017
HEYDAROV Hidayat (AZE) - WRL 23: 5th Baku Grand Slam 2017
DRAKSIC Rok (SLO) - WRL 25: 1st Grand Prix Budapest 2016

Number of Athletes: 26
Top seed athletes
NYAMSUREN Dagvasuren (MGL) - WRL 9: 1st Ulaanbaatar Grand Prix 2016
CSOKNYAI Laszlo (HUN) - WRL 19: 2nd Zagreb Grand Prix 2016
LUCENTI Emmanuel (ARG) - WRL 21: 2nd Buenos Aires Pan American Open 2017
BOBONOV Davlat (UZB) - WRL 44: 1st Grand Prix Tashkent 2016

Number of Athletes: 22
Top seed athletes
KUKOLJ Aleksandar (SRB) - WRL 6: 1st Grand Slam Tokyo 2016
USTOPIRIYON Komronshokh (TJK) - WRL 12: 1st Asian Championships Senior 2016
BOZBAYEV Islam (KAZ) - WRL 17: 1st Baku Grand Slam 2017
SAFGULIYEV Tural (AZE) - WRL 27: 3rd Grand Slam Abu Dhabi 2016

Number of Athletes: 21
Top seed athletes
MAMMADOV Elkhan (AZE) - WRL 6: 1st World Championships Rio de Janeiro 2013
KURBONOV Soyib (UZB) - WRL 9: 1st Grand Prix Tashkent 2016
BISULTANOV Adlan (RUS) - WRL 11: 1st Grand Prix Zagreb 2016
CIRJENICS Miklos (HUN) - WRL 19: 3rd Baku Grand Slam 2017

Number of Athletes: 21
Top seed athletes
BOR Barna (HUN) - WRL 3: 2nd Baku Grand Slam 2017
KOKAURI Ushangi (AZE) - WRL 19: 2nd Grand Prix Almaty 2016
KRAKOVETSKII Iurii (KGZ) - WRL 21: 5th Düsseldorf Grand Prix 2017
SADIKOVIC Harun (BIH) - WRL 38: 5th Paris Grand Slam 2017
KRPALEK Lukas (CZE) - WRL 58: Olympic Champion -100kg

See also