Feature Story Wednesday, February 15, 2017
In Search of Olympic Glory
National team includes 15 athletes, eight coaches, and one mission staff member from BC
Megan Pollock, Special Olympics BC/Submitted photos
BC speed skaters Paige Norton and Matthew Williams (below) are two of 108 athletes getting ready for SO in Austria in March.
he countdown to competition has begun, as 108 Special Olympics Canada athletes with intellectual disabilities, plus 35 volunteer mission staff and coaches, prepare and train for their trip to the 2017 Special Olympics World Winter Games in Austria March 14 to 25.
Special Olympics Team Canada, the third-largest team at the Games, will compete in six different sports: alpine skiing, cross country skiing, figure skating, floor hockey, snowshoeing, and speed skating.
“Our Team Canada athletes, coaches, and mission staff are well prepared for this year’s World Winter Games,” said Marian Coulson, Chef de Mission for Special Olympics Team Canada. “The passion and skill level of our team is unmatched; we expect great results at these Games and, as always, a lasting impact on communities across the country.”
One of the world’s largest sporting and humanitarian events to be held in 2017, the World Games in Austria is a nine-day competition bringing together 3,000 athletes with intellectual disabilities and 1,100 coaches from as many as 110 countries. Learn more at www.austria2017.org
“I am very proud to be involved in Special Olympics Canada as Honorary Coach,” says Olympic and world champion figure skater Jamie Salé, who will accompany the athletes to Austria. “It is incredible to witness the role of sport in empowering individuals and transforming lives. We encourage all Canadians to rally behind our Special Olympics athletes for these games and to support local programs throughout the year.”
“We are very proud of our Team Canada athletes, staff, and coaches,” says Sharon Bollenbach, CEO, Special Olympics Canada. “Our programs reach far beyond just competitions and world class athletes, taking us into communities across the country, enriching the daily lives of over 42,000 Canadians with an intellectual disability (ID), through the transformative power of sport.”
The team members from British Columbia are:
• Abbotsford’s Paige
Norton (athlete, speed skating) and Donna Bilous (Head Coach, speed
Follow Team Canada:
Facebook and Twitter @SpecialOCanada
Hashtag #SOTeamCanada17 or #ÉquipeOSCanada17
Learn more about team members from B.C.:
Facebook and Instagram @specialolympicsbc
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