The Olympic Games 2016 has been and gone and Team GB did a fantastic job, but Rio isn’t over just yet. On Wednesday 7th September the Paralympic Games kicks off and here are 9 things to make you as eager as we are:
A military Paralympian Cpl Phil Eaglesham contracted Q Fever whilst on tour with the Royal Marines in Afghanistan. Now he’s in Rio and sporting a fab beard! The hashtag #PhilsBeard shows supporters showing off their (mainly fake) beards. Team H4H are also getting involved by creating our own beards to cheer on Phil!
JJ Chalmers on the screen
JJ will be presenting Channel 4’s coverage on this year’s Paralympics in Rio. JJ competed at the 2012 Invictus Games and won medals in cycling and on the track. After getting a glimpse into the world of media and broadcasting, he started presenting and is now in Rio – “Being a Royal Marine Commando was the greatest job in the world. My next career needed to be something I love doing and would make me want to get out of bed in the morning. It’s got to be something that makes me want to give everything I’ve got and that is presenting.”
The 2016 medals feature braille and make a noise when shaken
The new innovation for the Rio Paralympics will allow visually-impaired athletes to know if the medals are gold, silver or bronze. Hopefully ParalympicsGB will sing “Gold, gold, gold!”
Tom the Paralympic mascot
We can’t deny that Tom gives our Hero Bears some competition! Tom is created from all kinds of Brazilian forest plants and flowers. We’re looking forward to his debut at the opening ceremony!
The Last Leg
The Last Leg was one of our favourite things about London 2012 Paralympics, and now it’s back! Starting Wednesday 7th September at 8pm on Channel 4 (an hour before the opening ceremony), the team are on our screens once more, and hopefully we’ll see some of ParalympicsGB making an appearance on the show.
The Superhumans Trailer
The song has been in our heads for the last month now, and we like it more each time we watch it! If this is anything to go by then the Rio games will give us constant goose bumps.
It’s new to the Paralympics and ex-military Athlete Nick Beighton will be representing ParalympicsGB. Nick was injured in 2009 after stepping on an IED while serving in Afghanistan, which resulted in him losing both of his legs. His determination and incredible mind-set sees him in Rio making his mark on history!
Another new sport making a debut in Rio. Athletes race in three disciplines: 750m of swimming, followed by 20km of cycling and 5km of running. Representing ParalympicsGB is Joe Townsend – a former Royal Marine injured in Afghan in 2008. Joe has been supported by Help for Heroes since he was first injured, enabling him to compete as an international athlete and is about to achieve his goal to take part in the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games!
Great Britain will have a team of 264 athletes competing at the Rio Paralympics in 19 sports. We wish them all the best of luck!