Go Team Ireland: Irish Paralympians jet off to Rio

Go Team Ireland: Irish Paralympians jet off to Rio

Ireland’s Paralympians are heading for Rio.

The majority of the athletes sett of yesterday, with the final few set to join their teammates before the end of August.

The Games get underway on Wednesday, September 7, and run for 11 days through to September 18, with 48 Irish men and women competing across 10 sports.

The event will be covered in Britain on Channel 4, while RTÉ will broadcast primetime coverage in Ireland every evening on RTÉ 2.

The Irish team enjoyed a farewell event at Clayton Hotel, Dublin Airport, and were visited by Annalise Murphy, who won a silver medal for Ireland in her sailing event at the Olympic Games earlier this month.

Speaking at the same event, Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Patrick O’Donovan, told the Rio-bound group that the Government was “fully committed and supportive” of them.

“I would particularly like to express my gratitude to the families of the athletes — the parents, partners, siblings and children for the unwavering support you have given. What you have already achieved is massive and your country is hugely proud of you.”

After the event, Team Ireland headed straight to the airport, and some even managed to squeeze in some last minute exercise.

The group will no doubt be hoping to go one better than their impressive performance at London 2012, where they achieved eight gold medals throughout their disciplines — the best performance of an Irish Paralympic team in six straight Olympic games.

Like many other nations competing in Rio, Team Ireland have set up a crowdfunding campaign to see them through the Games.

Check out some of the messages they shared so far...