Irish Paralympic Team

24/06/2008

An Post Deliver For Beijing Bound Irish Paralympic Team

Newport, Wales: Paralympic Ireland received a major boost with the announcement today that An Post will be supporting their preparation for the Beijing Paralympics.

Ireland has qualified a record four Paralympic cycling slots for the games, a huge increase from the single qualification slot secured for the last games in Athens in 2004.

The Paralympic Cycling Ireland Team, who will sport the An Post sponsored kit, have gone from one qualification spot in Athens 2004, to four this year, which is an incredible achievement for the association and their athletes.

An Post Chief Executive Donal Connell said, “An Post is an Official Supporter of Ireland’s 2008 Paralympic Team in their training and participation in the Beijing Olympics. This is in keeping with our existing cycling sponsorship portfolio which includes our support of the Seán Kelly team and sponsorship of the An Post Green Jersey on this year’s Tour of Ireland.”

Speaking at today’s announcement at the Velodrome in Newport Wales, where the team have spent the last few days training, Paralympic Cycling Ireland Manager Denis Toomey said, “In order to give our athletes the best chance of success in China, we have put together a very comprehensive training programme, and An Post’s sponsorship is going a huge way to enable our athletes to adequately prepare to participate in the games and realise their full potential.”

The cycling team will compete in both Track and Road disciplines in Beijing and their pre-games preparations include training camps in the UK, Majorca and Belgium, and on the home front in Newry, Limerick and Dublin.

In addition, the team’s racing programme will see them compete at some major international road racing events including the 5 stage Tour of Belgium and Europa Cup road race and time trial in Spain. The team has already competed at some top level track races that included the Paralympic World Cup in Manchester and the Paralympic Grand Prix of Wales in Newport, last month.  Racing on the home front includes the Irish National Road Time Trials in Limerick this Friday and Irish National Track Championships in July.

The final selection of the athletes will be announced on July 2nd by the Paralympic Council of Ireland.

Visit www.anpost.ie/cycling to keep up todate with the team.

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