Riverina athlete Josh Hanlon is looking forward to showing the world 'what I'm made of' after winning selection in the Australian Winter Paralympic Team for the Beijing Games.
Hanlon was among the 10-person national squad announced by Paralympics Australia on Wednesday for the games that are set to begin on March 4.
Hanlon's selection comes just two weeks after making his world championships debut and continues a remarkable rise through the alpine sit-skiing ranks.
The 24-year-old will represent Australia in the giant slalom and slalom disciplines.
An ecstatic Hanlon said it was a dream come true.
"I'm extremely excited to be making my Paralympic debut after such a hectic couple of years of training. I really can't wait to be in the start gate ready to send it down to make all of Australia proud," Hanlon said.
"From the first day I learnt to sit ski I've dreamt of making it all the way to the Paralympic Games. The road to getting there hasn't been without its obstacles, a broken back six months ago and of course Covid-19. Eighth place in my debut World Champs event would definitely have to be the proudest moment I have felt from skiing.
"At the Games I hope to continue to cut the times between myself and leaders. I hope to perform at my full potential and show the world what I'm made of."
The selection continues a extraordinary journey for Hanlon since a bacterial infection almost took his life in June 2018.
At that point, the popular young ruckman was plying his trade for North Wagga in the Farrer League, having only recently crossed over Ganmain-Grong Grong-Matong and before that, Tullibigeal.
Hailing from Weethalle, Hanlon's journey since has been one of courage, determination and inspiration.
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Paralympics Australia Chief Executive Catherine Clark congratulated Hanlon and his fellow athletes on their selection.
"Being named in an Australian Paralympic Winter Team is an enormous achievement, but perhaps more so for these Games than any other," Clark said.
"These 10 athletes have shown the very best of our Paralympic movement, displaying remarkable resilience and determination to remain at the elite level throughout all the challenges of the past two years.
"I would like to thank Snow Australia, including Chief Executive Michael Kennedy and his dedicated staff, for their hard work leading up to this campaign. As a program, you faced numerous obstacles, including cancelled camps, limited training and competition opportunities, border restrictions, lockdowns and more, yet provided an extraordinary level of support to this Team.
"The next assignment is the Games itself and I cannot wait to see this wonderful group of athletes write the next chapter in our nation's proud history at the Winter Paralympics."
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