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Hopes high as record 10 Northern Ireland athletes go for gold at Rio Paralympic games

A record number of athletes from Northern Ireland have been selected for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games from September 7-18.

Ten athletes, including London 2012 medalist Jason Smyth, Michael McKillop and Bethany Firth (right) will compete under the Paralympics Ireland or Paralympics GB banners. They will be aiming to continue and top the success of the London 2012 games where Northern Ireland paralympians secured seven medals.

Disability Sport NI Performance Sport Manager, Elaine Reid said: “London 2012 was such a huge success for Northern Ireland athletes and it looks like Rio is on track to be just as competitive. We are delighted to have such a strong contingent competing in the Games and for the first time we have athletes making their Paralympic debut in wheelchair basketball, boccia and shooting which is testament to the performance structures and support being provided to athletes at a local level.”

The team depart mid-August to training camps ahead of the final journey to Rio.

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