Sam's Goal to be at the 2018 Winter Olympics

On April 27th 2013 our son, Sam was involved in a motorcycle accident with the outcome of him becoming a paraplegic. 

Since the accident, he has found the resilience, the mental strength, and the endurance to achieve career and sporting accomplishments that would never have been a part of his ‘able-bodied’ life. 

Sam started skiing 4 months after his accident and instantly loved being back on the snow and skiing. His dream is to compete at the Winter Paralympics and is aiming for the next Games in South Korea in March 2018. He was recently in Europe during the Aussie summer training with the Paralympic Team and racing on the International circuit. This was his first season of competing and it couldn’t have been any better. He improved immensely and returned to Australia even more hungry and determined as ever.

2017 will be another busy year for Sam. Full time training in Perisher Valley (NSW) but will also have to go to New Zealand to compete and then back to Europe in October for more intensive training and racing in the hope of being able to qualify for the Games in March 2018.

 

 

Take a look at Sam's latest Video Diary.  An if you would like to get behind Sam's goal to reach the Winter Olympics visit his Go Fund Me page

Sam has recently launched a GoFundMe campaign to generate some funds to help him with his travel expenses. We would appreciate any assistance to help him with his dream.

Check out how to support Sam

As the team finish off a 2-week training block, we packed up and drove 4 hours to Pitztal, Austria for IPCAS and Europa Cup races. Here I would compete in my first ever Super-G race. Arriving at our accommodation we set up the ski room where we would tune and wax our skis, got settled into our rooms, and had a quick dinner before we were briefed on the plan for tomorrow.

Race Day!
Waking up at 5am, feeling quite nervous as I had no idea what to expect the hill to look like and how the race will go. Heading to the hill is quite an effort, as we are racing on a glacier at 3440m so to get there you need to take a 10-minute train through the mountain. You arrive in a cafe and from there you head outside and can access the snow within 10metres of the door.

Time to suit up and focus on why we are here. I jump into my rig making sure everything is perfect and all my straps are tight. I start to push towards the 2km T-bar to get to the top of the race hill. 1 hour before the race the athletes are permitted to inspect the course so we know what to be careful of and we understand the line to run to give us the best chance to win. A few warm up runs and I’m feeling ready to race, once I’m back at the top I start to warm up, focus on my movements and tell myself to relax and breath, I go through the course in my head making sure I remember when to turn and what to be look out for, as the male sit skiers race last,  the course can be very bumpy with huge ruts that can form forcing us to make split decisions on the line we take as we are skiing the course. I am runner No.159, as the race starts to get closer I feel the nerves kicking in, I focus on my breathing and try to relax, I find it very hard to relax, as there are a million things running through my mind. It is time to go, “focus on what you need to do Sam”, “You’ve got this, just ski and have fun”. As I push out of the start I instantly lose my nerves and I am skiing just how I planned, coming down the course with speed and 100% concentration, as I cross the finish line my whole body is overwhelmed with relief, I have just finished my first Super-G and I came 13th out of 27. Not bad for my first outdoor race