CAMBRIDGE, Mass. - Adrienne Jarocki and Aliya Itzkowitz of the women's fencing team are taking part in the Grand Prix for sabre on Dec. 12 and 13 held at Harvard's Gordon Indoor Track. Eli Derswitz, who is taking a year off from his studies, will also be participating in the event.
The Grand Prix is one of several international events in fencing that includes the top participants in each country vying for points that will determine their ultimate qualification for their country's fencing team. This event allocates double the points that are given in a regular world cup. The Grand Prix is part of a nine-city series held by the Federation Internatonale d'Escrime and will feature the best sabre fencers in the world.
Saturday's event schedule includes the start of the women's pools to qualify at 9 a.m. while the men's start time is 2 p.m. Sunday starts with the direct elimination table of 64 women's sabre fencers at 9 a.m. while the men's table of 64 starts at 1:40 p.m. The start of the men's and women's semifinals commence at 8 p.m.
This year the stakes are much higher as points earned in this event will count towards qualification to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. Jarocki, ranked 25th on USFencing.com, and Itzkowitz , ranked sixth on BritishFencing.com, qualified to participate due to their current national standings.
Dershwitz, who is currently ranked No. 2, is training for the Olympics in Rio. He has previously won three international titles this year, taking gold at the Junior World Championships, the Pan American Championship, and the Pan American Games. Last year, Dershwitz won bronze at the NCAA Championship.
Students at Harvard are eligible for free tickets to the two-day tournament by presenting their ID's. All other tickets are available starting at $8, while admission is free for children ages five and under.