Hold on to your 2012 hats, people: today marks just 1,000 days to go to the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Paralympic Games.
If we fast-forward to 29 August 2012, the world’s best Paralympians will be in town, competing across 20 sports and disciplines. It doesn’t seem that far away!
Sebastian Coe, Chair of the London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG), says, “In 1,000 days’ time, we’ll be welcoming the Paralympic Games home and we will deliver a spectacular showcase for Paralympic sport.
“This is a golden opportunity to raise awareness of Paralympic sport, challenge stereotypes about disability and secure a legacy which will have every disabled child getting greater access to sport.”
Colin Chaytors, the chief executive of the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS), points out that in Britain, we have many talented althetes with disabilities: “Behind those athletes are coaches, volunteers and other developmental support who share the same passion as us to continue the good work.
“EFDS are dedicated to working with all parties over the next two years to ensure we not only make the 2012 Paralympics a success for Britain, but create a long lasting legacy for all disabled people in sport.”
We love the fact that there’s lots of concentration on the legacy aspect of the Paralympics today.
But we’re also enthused by a second string to today’s announcement. Coe says, “As the clock counts down to 2012, there is still time to get involved in the Paralympic Games, and still time to become part of the British team.”
Yes, if you’ve got an impairment and think you’ve got what it takes to compete in 2012, today’s the day to get in touch!
It can take athletes up to eight years to reach an Olympics, but today we’ve learnt Paralympic hopefuls can be ready to compete at an elite level much sooner. Read more about the Talent 2012 programme here.