Seeking FIVB World Tour gold in the United States

 

United States players will be seeking their first-ever gold medals on the sand of Fort Lauderdale Beach Park at this week's Fort Lauderdale Major

Fort Lauderdale, USA, February 25, 2018 - When play opens officially here Tuesday, the United States will be hosting its 18th FIVB World Tour event. The American men will be seeking their fifth men's gold medal on home sand, while the women will be chasing their seventh.

Quick links - Beach volleyball:
FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour - Fort Lauderdale

The $600,000 Fort Lauderdale Major will mark the third appearance for the international beach volleyball circuit on the Fort Lauderdale Beach Park sand as the United States hosted the FIVB World Tour Finals in October 2015 and the inaugural Fort Lauderdale Major in Feburary 2017. The United States is scheduled to host a second FIVB World Tour event at the start of May (2-6) in Huntington Beach, California.

Beach volleyball power Brazil has dominated the podium at the United States events by winning 10 of the men's and 11 of the women's gold medals with a total of 42 top three finishes (18 for men and 24 for women). The Brazilian men have won the last five American stops, including podium-topping finishes in Fort Lauderdale in 2015 and 2017.

The last American gold medal finishes were 2015 for the men (Jake Gibb/Casey Patterson in St. Petersburg, Florida) and 2016 for women (April Ross/Kerri Walsh Jennings in Cincinnati, Ohio and Long Beach, California).

Americans April Ross (left) and Phil Dalhausser will each be seeking their third FIVB World Tour gold medal on home sand

Norway is the only other country to win a gold medal at a USA-hosted event as Viking beach volleyball legends Jan Kvalheim and Bjorn Maaseide joined the Americans and Brazilians as gold medal winners by topping the men's podium twice in Miami (1994) and Hermosa Beach (1996).

FIVB President Dr. Ary S. Graça F° (centre) with Norwegians Jan Kvalheim (left) and Bjorn Maaseide
 
Other countries to medal at USA-hosted events are Argentina (2 men, 0 women), Australia (0, 3), Canada (2, 0), China (0, 1), Germany (0, 5), Italy (1, 0), Latvia (1, 0), The Netherlands (1, 0), Poland (1, 0), Slovak Republic (0, 1), Spain (2, 2) and Switzerland (2, 0).

While American pairs have won 11 gold medals on their home sand (five men and six women), Brazil has won 50 titles (26 men, 24 women) when hosting a FIVB World Tour event.

China ranks third with six women's gold medals at home. Australia (1 men, 2 women), Germany (1, 2) and Russia (2, 1) have each won three gold medals on their country's sand. Other countries with gold medals when hosting a FIVB World Tour event are Argentina (1, 0), the Czech Republic (0, 1), the Netherlands (1, 0) and Switzerland (1, 0).

Australians Mariafe Artacho (left) and Taliqua Clancy captured home sand gold in Sydney this past November