Paralympics

Reset and start again

After some very disappointing news at the end of last season with not getting a chance to compete at the Paralympic Games due to things that were out of mine and the teams control, I had some serious thinking to do over the summer months. I had to decide if I wanted to carry on with sport and not just the skiing but any kind of sport as I wasn’t sure if I could handle the disappointment  if it did happen again.

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Thankfully, I had the opportunity to train with the British Paracanoe team in Nottingham and Eton Dorney for a fair bit of the summer and it gave me that spark again to get back on the horse (as it were) and try again and to become the best athlete I can be and see where it takes me.

First things first though was the birth of our beautiful daughter who arrived in late September. She is another reason I want to carry on in sport. I want her in years to come to be proud of her dad and know sometimes life can be horrible and tough but most of the time there is light at the end of the tunnel and you can achieve your dreams with hard work and determination.

I’m not going to lie it’s been hard getting back into a full time training routine over the past few months and I’m not in the shape I’d like to be in just 3 weeks out from our first World Cup but this week in Norway has shown I’ve still got it even if it’s not pretty right now. So all I can do now is get my head down these last couple of weeks and fingers crossed I will put in a good performance at the World Cup in Finland.

I’d like to thank everyone who have supported me the past 6 months and I’m really excited to be part of GB Snowsport and be on this journey to the next Paralympic Games in 2022.

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From ParalympicsGB: Arnold determined to end whirlwind year on a high with PyeongChang on the horizon

Article from ParalympicsGB

With Paralympic qualification up for grabs in only his second ever race, Steve Arnold has had far from a steady introduction to para Nordic skiing.

Having only taken up the sport in January, 2017 has proven to be a whirlwind year for Arnold, making his debut at February’s World Championships with only ten hours on the snow in his locker.

But as the former GB handcyclist prepares to mount his qualification campaign for PyeongChang, he’s determined to show a summer of hard work has paid off.

This weekend, the first Nordic World Cup of the season gets underway in Canmore, with Scott Meenagh and Terry Ahrens also flying the flag for Great Britain on the Canadian slopes.

And having missed out on the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games during his cycling career, Arnold is more determined than ever to make it onto the plane to PyeongChang.

“It’s been a hectic year, a whirlwind, because I haven’t even been doing the sport for a year yet,” said Arnold, who was vice-captain for the UK team at this year’s Invictus Games.

“Nordic skiing was a sport I had never done before, even before I was injured, so it interested me when I was given the opportunity.

“I wasn’t even thinking about PyeongChang when I first started. The first race I did was in February at the World Championships, and I only went because I needed to race.

“I definitely wasn’t good enough to be there at the time but I needed to go to make sure I raced that season.

“Over the summer, going to the Paralympics has become more and more of a reality. I’ve been getting a lot quicker and better at picking things up.

“Words can’t describe what it would mean to me to get to the Paralympics. It would be absolutely incredible.”

"Words can’t describe what it would mean to me to get to the Paralympics. It would be absolutely incredible."Steve Arnold

Para Nordic skiing sees athletes compete in biathlon and cross-country races, with Arnold getting his World Cup season underway on Saturday.

The action in Canmore runs from December 9-17, with the British team having spent the last week getting used to the conditions and fine-tuning their last-minute preparations.

But while he admits to feeling the pressure slowly starting to build on his shoulders, Arnold is quietly confident for the months ahead.

“We’re really looking forward to starting to race in Canmore,” he said.

“The track is looking good and we’ve been training a couple of times a day. The excitement is really starting to build.

“I’m starting to feel a bit of pressure and a lot of that is from myself. I don’t really know how this World Cup is going to go, I’ve only ever raced once before, but I know I’m in a better place than I was in February.

“Hopefully I can hit the qualifying standard, and if not, close to it, and then at least we know we’re moving in the right direction.

“Myself, Scott and Terry are all confident this season can go well. We feel like we’re really ready to go and we don’t think we’re that far behind the rest of the field now.”

Photo: Help for Heroes 

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