Team heads north for Paralympic Camp
The Ireland Paralympics team will train in the north of Ireland, Sports Minister Carál Ní Chuilín announced today. The team will be based at the Antrim Forum in the run up to the 2012 Paralympic Games.
The news is particularly interesting to the sailing comunity in NI as part of the team will be the Irish Sonar Team. The team will be based at Carrickfergus, working in conjunction with Belfast Lough Sailability.
Sports Minister Carál Ní Chuilín said:“I welcome the news that Paralympics Ireland have decided to use the facilities in the north for their pre-Games training. It comes at a time of building excitement around the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
“In recent weeks Australia’s boxing team announced they intend to train here. We have also hosted several positive visits from a range of Olympic and ParalympicCommittees – including the Chinese gymnastics team and the Indonesian badminton squad – who acknowledged our top-class facilities.
“Today we announce that the Paralympics Ireland team will train here next summer. I am encouraged that the team chose the north, and wish the athletes every success in their preparations. I hope these facilities will be the springboard to Paralympic achievement and medal-winning performances at the Games. I congratulate the work and professionalism of Disability Sport NI, who have been instrumental in making this happen."
Chief Executive Officer Paralympics Ireland Liam Harbison added: “We are delighted to announce that the Irish Paralympic Team will have its first ever training camp in Northern Ireland next June in the final build up to the London 2012 Paralympic Games. The decision to use the fine facilities in Antrim has been on the back of the great work of Disability Sport Northern Ireland and Antrim Borough Council in ensuring the elite athletes preparation requirements will be matched by top class training venues in Northern Ireland."
Welcoming the announcement, Dominic Walsh Chair of Sport Northern Ireland commented: “Being selected to host Team Ireland is exciting news and something that we are very proud of.
“It shows that we take sport for people with disabilities very seriously and make every effort to accommodate all those who want to take part in sport, whatever their physical abilities. Our vision is to use the Games to inspire change, and change attitudes towards people with a disability. Sport Northern Ireland works closely with Disability Sports NI to support the development of quality facilities through the Inclusive Sports Facility Accreditation; to increase participation amongst people with physical, sensory and learning disability, and to improve sporting performance. We are delighted to be hosting Team Ireland, and look forward to welcoming the team for their training camp.”
Notes to editors:
1. Paralympics Ireland have applied for funding through the London Organising Committee for the Olympic Games (LOCOG), who provide funding for National Olympic and Paralympic Committees to base their camps in the UK.
2. DCAL is the lead Department in matters relating to the 2012 Olympic Games. Media enquiries should be addressed to the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure Press Office Tel (028) 90 515 045 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Out of office hours please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.
3. Sport NI is tasked with attracting teams to train in the north of Ireland. For further information please contact: Catherine McKeown, Marketing and Press Officer on 028 9038 3832 / 07792 600121 or via email email@example.com