FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour

Rio de Janeiro Open | 2 - 6 September 2015

#RioOpen


Press release

Testing & competing on Copacabana


Rio hosts the FIVB World Tour for the first-time since 2004

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, August 31, 2015 - After playing on three continents since the end of April, the FIVB World Tour crosses the equator and travels to South America and the site of the 2016 Olympic Beach Volleyball competition on Copacabana beach for the US$150,000 Rio Open.

The 13th women’s and 12th men’s stop on the 2015 international calendar, the Rio Open will also serve as a “test” event for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games where this week’s competition starts Wednesday with qualifying followed by four days of Main Draw action concluding with the medal matches Sunday where the winning pairs in both genders will share the $11,000 first-place prizes.

Led by four teams from host Brazil, including reigning FIVB world champions Alison Cerutti and Bruno Oscar Schmidt, 15 of the top 32-ranked pairs on the men’s 2015 international circuit will be competing on Copacabana.  Other top host country teams in the competition will be Evandro Goncalves/Pedro Solberg, Emanuel Rego/Ricardo Santos and Vitor Felipe/Alvaro Filho.

The women’s field will feature 14 of the top 32 pairs on the FIVB World Tour as Brazil has five highly-ranked tandems on the international list led by recently-crowned FIVB world champions Agatha Bednarczuk/Barbara Seixas.  Other top Brazilian pairs are Talita Antunes/Larissa Franca, Maria Antonelli/Juliana Felisberta, Fernanda Alves/Taiana Lima and the Salgado sisters (Carolina and Maria Clara).

Alison and Bruno will be seeking their sixth-straight FIVB World Tour gold medal finish as the Brazilians started their string of consecutive podium-topping finishes by winning the world championships at the start of July in The Hague followed by titles in Switzerland (Gstaad), Japan (Yokohama), the United States (Long Beach) and this past weekend in Poland (Olsztyn).

The last time a men’s team on the FIVB World Tour had a better winning streak of tournament titles was in 1999 when Brazilians Jose Loiola and Emanuel Rego topped consecutive international podiums six times with gold medal finishes in Norway (Stavanger), Italy (Lignano), France (world championships in Marseille), Austria (Klagenfurt), Portugal (Espinho) and Belgium (Ostende).

After starting the season with a fourth, 17th, ninth and ninth in their first four starts in Russia, Croatia, Norway and the United States and a 13-7 match mark, Alison and Bruno have almost been perfect on the court by posting a 36-2 record with both losses in pool play.

The five gold medal finishes have netted the Brazilians $288,000 to increase Alison and Bruno’s earnings to $341,000.  With two more FIVB World Tour events left on Alison’s and Bruno’s schedule this season, the pair is within striking distance of the single-season men’s earnings record of $387,000 earned by Americans Phil Dalhausser and Todd Rogers in 2010.

While Agatha and Barbara are the topped-ranked pair on the women’s tour, Talita and Larissa have won the most gold medals (five) and money ($324,000).  In the last 13 months since forming their partnership in July 2014, Talita and Larissa have nine gold medals in 14 events with an impressive 80-8 match mark and $534,000 in earnings.

The Rio Open will be the first FIVB World Tour event to be played on Copacabana beach since 2004 when European pairs from Germany and Switzerland filled the top three men’s podium places while the Brazilian women captured all three medals in the late September tournament that season-ending international event.

The first FIVB-sanctioned event was played in Rio when a men’s event was held in 1987 on Ipanema beach.  In total, the men’s FIVB World Tour has staged 14 events in Rio with the women playing seven times starting in February 1993.  Copacabana was also the site of the 2005 FIVB under-21 World Championships.  Here is a list of Rio gold medal winners on the FIVB World Tour.

Year Men’s Rio Gold Medal teams
1987 Randy Stoklos/Sinjin Smith, United States
1988 Karch Kiraly/Pat Powers, United States
1989 Stoklos/Smith, United States
1990 Stoklos/Smith, United States
1991 Stoklos/Smith, United States
1992 Stoklos/Smith, United States
1993 Adam Johnson/Kent Steffes, United States
1994 Franco Neto/Roberto Lopes, Brazil
1995 Andre Gomes/Carlos Loss, Brazil
1996 Franco/Roberto Lopes, Brazil
1997 Emanuel/ Rego/Zé Marco de Melo, Brazil
1998 Zé Marco/Ricardo Santos, Brazil
2003* Emanuel/Ricardo, Brazil
2004 Markus Dieckmann/Jonas Reckermann, Germany
*FIVB World Championships

Year Women’s Rio Gold Medal teams
1993 Nancy Reno/Karolyn Kirby, United States
1995 Sandra Pires/Jackie Silva, Brazil
1996 Sandra/Jackie, Brazil
1997 Adriana Samuel/Monica Rodrigues, Brazil
1998 Shelda Bede/Adriana Behar, Brazil
2003* Misty May-Treanor/Kerri Walsh Jennings, United States
2004 Ana Paula Connolly/Sandra, Brazil
*FIVB World Championships

2005 FIVB under-21 World Championships at Rio
Men Martins Plavins/Aleksandrs Samoilovs, Latvia
Women Camilla Saldanha/Carolina Salgado, Brazil


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