Aaron Ewen heads to Paralympic Winter Games after injury
Iain McGregor / Stuff
Aaron Ewen will represent New Zealand at the Paralympic Winter Games after injury ruled him out four years ago.
Four years after retiring from the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games with a broken hip in training, Aaron Ewen will represent New Zealand at the flagship event.
Para-alpine skiers Ewen, Adam Hall and Corey Peters were confirmed to the New Zealand Paralympic team on Tuesday for the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in March.
In addition, PNZ Chef de Mission Jane Stevens, Assistant Chef de Mission Lynette Grace, Head Coach Ben Adams and Assistant Coach Scott Palmer were also selected. Other appointments will be made later.
Ewen’s selection has been particularly rewarding after being forced to withdraw from the PyeongChang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games squad following a broken hip, while training at Winter Park. in the United States before the Games.
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He made a successful comeback in winter 2019 in New Zealand and secured podiums in the Southern Hemisphere Cups. Ewen competes with a sit ski in the LW11 classification.
Ewen is from the small town of Waikato, Tuakau. He started sitting skiing about eight years ago after injuring his spine in a downhill mountain biking accident and losing the use of his legs.
“I’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time,” Ewen said. “I can’t wait to go to Beijing and know that I have finally reached the Paralympic Winter Games.
Hall was excited to show off his skills on a tough course in Beijing, as the Xiaohaituo Mountain area has one of the steepest racetracks in the world.
Hall competes in a number of standing para-alpine ski events in the LW1 classification. Beijing 2022 will be its fifth consecutive Paralympic Winter Games.
“New Zealand is still hitting above its weight for a small country. Let’s prove we can do it again, ”Hall said.
“We talked a lot about the course in Beijing. The course will really challenge the athletes and their abilities. This is to my advantage, I like competing against difficult trails, it’s more fun than a simple sailing trail that everyone is able to do as well.
Beijing 2022 would be a chance for Peters to build on the medals he won at the Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games and PyeongChang 2018.
Peters competes in a number of events with a sit ski, which he learned to use following a spinal cord injury (classification LW12-1).
Peters appreciated the benefit of a dedicated support team.
“Everything is in the team. The coaches, physiotherapists and the entire Beijing 2022 team are world-class professionals.
“It’s an individual event, but the support team is vital to winning. It helps us focus. We can do what we do best without distractions. As an athlete, you can just go out there and give your best.
The New Zealand Paralympic team will leave New Zealand later this month for competitions in the northern hemisphere in Canada and Europe.