By Emily Goddard

Kozo Kubo 150213February 16 - Kozo Kubo of Japan has been named as the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) of the month for January after he made a clean sweep to win all three of the biathlon sitting events at the IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup in Cable last month.

The former wheelchair marathon athlete finished at the top of the IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup biathlon rankings and his performance in the United States pushed him up to second place in the overall season rankings behind Russian Roman Petushkov.

Kubo, 31, secured the long distance biathlon sitting title in a time of 40min 36.6sec, as well as winning the short and middle distance events in 22:03.0 and 32.07.2, respectively.

Since coming onto the scene in 2008, he has established himself as a leading competitor on an international scale and is the first Japanese sitting skier to have taken two consecutive wins in World Cup competition.

His next major event is the 2013 IPC Nordic Skiing World Championships in Sollefteå, Sweden, which is due to take place from February 25 until March 5.

Kubo claimed the IPC Athlete of the Month title with 45 per cent of the vote, to edge out American snowboarder Evan Strong.

Dutch wheelchair tennis player Aniek van Koot, Japanese wheelchair tennis player Shingo Kunieda and Slovakian alpine skier Henrieta Farkašová were also on the shortlist for the award.

The IPC Athlete of the Month nominations are compiled from submissions by National Paralympic Committees (NPCs) and International Federations (IFs), with the winner being selected by a public vote via a poll on the IPC website.

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