Special Olympics St Albans athletes pick up nearly 50 medals in summer games

PUBLISHED: 13:00 12 August 2009 | UPDATED: 14:19 06 May 2010

Members of Special Olympics St Albans

Members of Special Olympics St Albans

SPORTING superstars from Special Olympics St Albans (SOSA) brought home nearly 50 medals from this year s National Summer Games. Over 2,700 disabled athletes from across the UK took part in the Special Olympics Eastern Region games between July 25 and 31

SPORTING superstars from Special Olympics St Albans (SOSA) brought home nearly 50 medals from this year's National Summer Games.

Over 2,700 disabled athletes from across the UK took part in the Special Olympics Eastern Region games between July 25 and 31 at the Walkers Stadium in Leicester, including 36 budding young athletes from St Albans.

Supported by the district council's Arts, Sport and Health Development Team, SOSA athletes competed in seven sports throughout the week including athletics, equestrian, swimming and boccia, a game designed for wheelchair users which involves throwing coloured leather balls at a target.

SOSA was especially successful in athletics, winning nine gold, nine silver and two bronze medals. Niall Bradley, 21, from St Albans, took home a staggering five golds, including one that he won as a last-minute substitute in the 4x100m run.

Georgina Maton and Addie Fleisher, who were competing in their first ever Summer Games, also impressed in the equestrian competition, winning two gold, two silver and two bronze medals between them despite the torrential rain conditions.

St Albans boccia player Thomas Holly, 19, narrowly missed out on a medal despite playing "fantastically" according to his coach Adam Garland: "Thomas definitely made his coaching team proud and played some of the best shots I've seen him play. I was very impressed with his sportsmanship as well as his game play."

Special Olympics co-ordinator Emily Onley said that she was overwhelmed by SOSA's success and added: "Taking part in the game was a very unique opportunity which all the competitors worked so hard for. Everyone felt proud to be taking part in the athlete's parade around the stadium, as well as taking the Special Olympic Oath."

For more information on how to get involved in Special Olympics, you can contact Emily Onley on 01727 827667 or email her at emily.onley@leisureconnection.co.uk

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