Winter Paralympics Open in Cheery Mood

10 March 2018, 01:22 | Isaac Mcdaniel

Paralympics 2018: Russian team banned from Pyeongchang Games but 30 to compete under NPA banner

United States President Donald Trump has claimed that South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in has credited him for the success of the Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympics

The Winter Paralympics were officially opened at a ceremony in Pyeongchang, South Korea on Friday.

Among the flagbearers at the opening ceremony were many of those figures.

In addition, athletes from Russian Federation will also take part under the banner of "neutral Paralympic athletes" after their nation failed to satisfy the International Paralympic Committee over doping concerns. The first event was held in Sweden.

U.S. snowboarder Brenna Huckaby, who has a prosthetic leg, was the first female para-athlete to model a swimsuit for the United States magazine Sports Illustrated.

The 29-year-old mono skier competed in Vancouver in 2010 but after a serious crash at Sochi 2014 had to undergo severe surgery resulting in a lengthy and tortuous return to Paralympic-levels of fitness.

"My family used to go on snowboarding vacations, so (after the accident) I leapt at the chance to get back on a board", he said before leaving for South Korea.

The Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games were held last month
The Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games were held last month

"I believe the Olympics and Paralympics in PyeongChang and our endeavors for peace will help create a new world peace", he said. The guides will also receive a medal if the athletes they are helping win a place on the podium.

In a speech to a reception just hours before the opening of the Paralympic Games in the Eastern Alpine resort, Moon also asked the participants to enthusiastically welcome North Korea in its first Paralympic Winter Games. The remaining athletes compete on Saturday.

Instead, a North Korean party of 18 representatives walked with their own flag to mark their first appearance at a Winter Paralympics, although there are only two athletes competing - both in cross-country skiing - with the rest of the group made up of officials.

"And if you look at the history of winter sports, the Brits are all over it".

Following the closure of the Winter Olympics at the same venue on February 25, action will move towards the para athletes waiting to take part in the 12th edition of the Games. Canada's Paralympians are some of our country's finest athletes.

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