Special Olympics hero breaks Guinness World Record as most qualified Referee
Andreas with his official Guinness Book of Records Certificate
World Record Holder
A Special Olympics coach has broken a Guinness World Record for the most referee qualifications across multiple sports.
Andreas Kolettis from Pireas, Greece is a certified referee on a total of 27 sports. Kolettis is qualified in the following sports: athletics, badminton, beach handball, beach tennis, beach volleyball, blind football, bridge, chess, fencing, football, futsal, mountaineering, rally car, sailing, sport fishing, swimming, synchronized swimming, table tennis, tennis, volleyball and wushu kung fu. To be considered eligible, a participant must be certified by the international competitive body or its national/regional subdivision for the sport and must have officiated sanctioned competitive contests in the sport, as well.
Andreas is a special guard with the Greek Police and a graduate of the University of Athens. A decorated athlete himself in swimming and weightlifting, Andreas is also a Special Olympics coach in weightlifting working with athletes with intellectual disabilities.
Power of Sport to Transform Lives
“Working with Special Olympics changed my whole attitude to sport” says Andreas. “I realised that every single person regardless of their ability of disability, has the chance to transform their life through the joy and power of sport. At Special Olympics I get the amazing and fulfilling opportunity to help athletes reach their own personal achievement against great odds rather than reach an elite achievement against others. For me sport is not a hobby. It is a means to an end. I want more children to get involved in sports and in the arts rather than spend all their time on facebook or trying to get money for the latest phone. If I can motivate even one child in this direction then I believe I have made a positive contribution to society,” concludes Andreas.
Andreas (right) at the World Summer Games Athens 2011
Congratulations from Special Olympics
On behalf of athletes all across Greece and the world, we congratulate Andreas on his groundbreaking achievement and thank him for his outstanding contribution in helping our athletes reveal their own champion.