Katie Kelly wins gold at Rio Paraolympics. Pictured here with guide Michelle Jones.
Katie Kelly wins gold at Rio Paraolympics. Pictured here with guide Michelle Jones. Australian Paralympic Committee

Local athlete named as finalist for Paralympian of the Year

CASINO can make a claim to fame with Paralympian Katie Kelly who competed and won gold in the inaugural Para-triathlon at this year's Paralympic Games.

Kelly has now been named as a finalist for the Female Paralympian of the Year award as part of the Australian Paralympic Awards to be held in Sydney on Thursday, December 8.

Winning the first gold medal on offer in her sport, as Para-triathlon made its debut at the Paralympic Games, Kelly and her guide Olympic silver medallist Michellie Jones dominated the PT5 circuit, leading by 1:02 minutes.

The third lap of the bike ride marked a turning point for Kelly as they led the race from that point forward.

Born with Usher Syndrome, a degenerative disease affecting her hearing and vision, Kelly was declared legally blind in January 2015 but turned her disability into an opportunity when she began competing in Para-triathlon.

Congratulating Kelly on her success at her first Paralympic Games, Chef de Mission of the 2016 Australian Paralympic Team Kate McLoughlin said:

"Katie embodies all the values of the Paralympic Games - determination, strength and courage - and she was able to reap the rewards of her labour when she won the first gold medal on offer in her sport, as Para-triathlon made its Paralympic debut.

"Katie absolutely deserves to be nominated for the award and I look forward to celebrating her achievements at the Australian Paralympic Awards Gala Dinner next week."

Tickets to the 2016 Australian Paralympic Awards are still available to purchase at www.eventbrite.com.au



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