For immediate release, January 4, 2018
Iran replaces Turkey to complete field for the 2018 Freestyle World Cup in Iowa City, April 7-8 at Carver-Hawkeye Arena
United World Wrestling, the international wrestling federation, has notified USA Wrestling that Turkey, one of the eight qualifying nations for 2018 Freestyle World Cup in Iowa City, Iowa, April 7-8, has withdrawn from the competition. Iran, which placed ninth in the 2017 World Championships, has replaced Turkey in the field.
Iran is the defending World Cup team champions, having won the 2017 Freestyle World Cup, hosted in Tehran, Iran, Feb. 16-17, defeating the United States in the championship dual meet.
With the addition of Iran to the field, the nations scheduled to compete in Iowa City, with their 2017 World Championships finish, include: 1. United States, 2.Russia, 3. Georgia; 5. Azerbaijan; 6. Japan; 7. Cuba; 8. Kazakhstan; 9. Iran.Tickets are now available for the two-day event at WorldCupIowaCity.com/tickets
The draw for the World Cup will be random, and conducted by United World Wrestling prior to the event.
Iran has won the last six Freestyle World Cup titles in a row, starting in 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan. They also won the 2013 and 2017 Freestyle World Cups held in Tehran, Iran, as well as all three World Cups hosted in Los Angeles, Calif. (2014-2016).
The United States, the 2017 World Freestyle Champions from the World Championships in Paris, France, last won the Freestyle World Cup in 2003 in Boise, Idaho. The USA has won 13 World Cup titles since the event was launched in 1973, behind only the Soviet Union with 15 World Cup titles.
Each time Iran comes to the United States to compete in wrestling there is much media attention, as well as a strong turnout of Iranian-American fans. Wrestling is a national sport in Iran, with an ancient tradition.
The competition will be held at the world-famous Carver-Hawkeye Arena on the campus of the University of Iowa. This venue hosted the record-setting 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials and the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials for wrestling. It has been the site of many of the most important wrestling events in American wrestling history, and serves as the home venue for the University of Iowa wrestling team, which annually leads the NCAA in attendance for the sport.
This will be the 30th time the United States has hosted the event, the most of any nation. Iowa City will be the ninth U.S. city to host the Freestyle World Cup. The other U.S. cities which have hosted the World Cup include Toledo, Ohio (17 times); Los Angeles, Calif. (three times) Chattanooga, Tenn. (twice); Spokane, Wash.(twice); Stillwater, Okla. (twice); Baltimore, Md.; Fairfax, Va. and Boise, Idaho.
The local organizing committee for the Freestyle World Cup is led by the University of Iowa and the Iowa City/Coralville Convention & Visitors Bureau and includes leaders from the City of Iowa City, City of Coralville and City of North Liberty.