Federal Sports Minister Kate Ellis is urging all Australians to get behind our athletes ahead of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Paralympics.
Australia’s largest ever Winter Paralympic team, made up of 11 athletes and three guides, is presently in Vancouver, with competition to officially get underway on Saturday.
Ms Ellis says the team is carrying on Australia’s proud Paralympic history.
“Sport shows us the great heights we as humans can reach and the hurdles that we can overcome,” she said.
“The Paralympics in particular show use the power we have to overcome adversity and shine.
“Like all Australians, I watched with great pride as Torah Bright, Lydia Lassila and Dale Begg-Smith won medals at the Winter Olympics. I’m sure we’ll feel that pride again as our Paralympians hit the snow and ice.”
Australia has participated in every winter Paralympics since the games were first held in 1976 in Ornskoldsvik, Sweden.
The past five Paralympics have resulted in medals, with Australia now boasting a total of 24 medals from nine appearances, 11 of them being gold.
The Australian team is likely to add to that tally in Vancouver, especially with both Shannon Dallas and Cameron Rahles-Rahbula going into the games as reigning world champions in the men’s sitting Slalom and the standing Slalom respectively.
All the results and highlights from the Vancouver Paralympics will be televised on ABC 1 from 6:30pm from Saturday March 13 to Monday March 22.