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Special Olympics GB announce Team for World Winter Games 2022

Special Olympics GB is excited to announce the team of athletes who will be representing Great Britain in the Special Olympics World Winter Games in January 2022 which is set to take place in Kazan, Russia.

Special Olympics logo

A team of 27 will attend on behalf of Special Olympics GB, in what is the pinnacle of the Special Olympics GB Winter Sports calendar. Great Britain will have 17 athletes competing in alpine skiing and figure skating. 

Special Olympics GB team roster:  

Alpine Skiing - female advanced

  • Ayesha Franks - South East (trains with SO South East Brentwood Ski Team)
  • Fleur O’Donohue - East Midlands (trains with SO West Midlands Ski Group)

Alpine Skiing - male advanced

  • Stefan Nakoneczny - South East (trains with SO Surrey)
  • Cameron De Vial - North West (trains with Rossendale Special Ski Club)
  • Gustavo Santos - South East (trains with SO South East Brentwood Ski Team)
  • Marcus Mason Williams (Reserve) - West Midlands (trains with SO West Midlands Ski Group)

Alpine Skiing - female intermediates

  • Joanne Desmond - West Midlands (trains with SO West Midlands Ski Group)
  • Emily Plant - Scotland (trains with SO Grampian)
  • Elanor Sinden - South East (trains with SO Surrey)
  • Kathryn Martin (Reserve) - South East (trains with SO Surrey)

Alpine Skiing - male intermediates

  • Jack Hale - South West (trains with Rossendale Special Ski Club)
  • Matthew Evans - North West (trains with Rossendale Special Ski Club)
  • Anthony Hibbard - West Midlands (trains with SO West Midlands Ski Group)
  • Charlie Marshall (Reserve) - South East (trains with SO South East Brentwood Ski Team)

Figure Skating

  • Stephanie Gott - North West (trains with SO Merseyside)
  • Jonathan Higgins - Scotland (trains with SO Scotland West)
  • Jennifer Gibson - Scotland (trains with SO Scotland West)
  • Courtney Montgomery - Scotland (trains with SO Scotland West)
  • Callum Mills - East Midlands (trains with SO Lincolnshire)
  • Jennifer Lee - Yorkshire & Humberside (trains with SO Bradford)

On hearing the news about his selection, one of our Alpine Skiing athletes, Jack Hale said:

"I can’t believe it, this is the wholes world to me!"

Michelle Carney, CEO of Special Olympics GB said:

"I’m absolutely delighted for all our amazing athletes who have been selected to compete at the Special Olympics Winter Games in Kazan in 2022. To represent your country in any sport is a remarkable achievement. To represent your country as an athlete with an intellectual disability adds a whole other level of respect. I know our athletes will do Great Britain proud and we are looking forward to sharing their amazing stories in the build up to the Games moving forward."

Alex Williams, Special Olympics GB’s Head of Delegation for the Special Olympics World Winter Games, 2022 said:

"Following a difficult selection process we are thrilled to be able to announce our team to represent Great Britain in Kazan in 2022. Congratulations to all our athletes who have been selected to compete and commiserations to those who did not get chosen this time. We just wish we could have taken everyone who applied! Now the hard work begins, and we are looking forward to getting to know each other and getting ready for the most amazing opportunity of representing Great Britain on such a world stage."

Kazan, Russia will host the Special Olympics World Winter Games in 2022 with a key aim of transforming the lives and prospects of people with intellectual disabilities across Russia.

Using the platform of the Games, Special Olympics will seek to transform attitudes about intellectual disabilities in Russia, as well as create new opportunities for social integration for the estimated three million people with intellectual disabilities living in Russia.

Two thousand Special Olympics athletes and Unified partners (athletes without intellectual disabilities) from 108 nations will compete at the World Winter Games in 2022. They will be joined by some 3,000 volunteers and 4,000 dignitaries and family members, making the event a truly global offering.

 For further information please visit Special Olympics GB website